Throughout the United States there are many white-tailed deer, elk, and exotic animals kept under high fence. These “trophy” animals are being fed extremely high protein diets which are creating unnatural super-deer. These animals are being transported across state lines, creating a perfect storm for spreading chronic wasting disease (CWD).
Chronic wasting disease is a transmittable spongiform encephalopathy (TSE). The disease can be found in mule deer, white-tailed deer, moose and the list is quickly increasing. The net is in Wyoming, Montana, Colorado and many states across the Midwest. Deer are dropping dead by the thousands, in the wild and behind fence.
The philosophical argument of walking into a fenced area, killing a big game animal which is fed, watered and cared for, an animal who hosts monstrous horns due to its super bionic growth food, I will not argue. At the crack of the rifle the mighty hunter, who has paid big bucks, takes his trophy out of the gated area and then brags about it when the monster is on his wall. He often embellishes where he shot the animal, how the animal was taken, and under what conditions he shot the animal. There is monstrous opposition for and against game ranches, which includes fenced game for hunting.
I do not at this time wish to address the pros and cons or the philosophy of what is right and wrong concerning how I feel about hunting farms. I will, however, tell you there is something in the wind which you need to know about. You need to know the facts as it could affect you and your family.
A recent study conducted by The Canadian Food Inspection Agency and the University of Calgary suggests that humans may very well be susceptible to CWD from deer. The study was recently discussed at the 2017 North American Deer Summit.
Starting in 2009, 18 old world monkeys (Macaques) were exposed to CWD in many different ways. Contact to CWD was made by contact of the skin, oral ingestion, intravenously and also by needle in the brain. At the time of the summit only 5 animals were available and ready for testing. This is where you need to take notice; 2 animals out of the 5 have become infected with CWD. Keep in mind that old world monkeys are very close to human beings. Old world monkeys are much closer to the human DNA than squirrel monkeys which have also contracted CWD in the wild.
By quoting Darrell Rowledge in an interview with Josh Honeycutt of Realtree’s Brow Tines and Backstrap blog, “this is just the tip of the iceberg.” Darrell Rowledge, Director of the Alliance for Public Wildlife, went on to say that CWD is a sister disease to Bovine Spongiform Encephalopathy (BSE), the infamous “Mad Cow Disease” that killed 229 people in the United Kingdom and is incurable. Estimates now show between 7,000 and 15,000 CWD infected animals are being consumed by humans every year. Both CWD and BSE have been declared a State of Emergency by the Secretary of Agriculture. CWD seems to go unchecked and the U.S. government is just starting to take it very, very seriously.
CWD could see major fallout in the AG market because of food safety concerns. Darryl Rowledge is very concerned about public safety. Mr. Rowledge goes on to say it could be tragic for the AG market with safety concerns, and he does not see a way to stop CWD. The United States government has bought Deer Farms with CWD and as a result of their purchase, has tried to eliminate CWD in many ways including burning the soil in furnaces, using formaldehyde and radiation. Guess what everyone, it didn’t work. CWD prions can move with blowing wind, dust, or rain water in contaminated soil.
As a big game hunter, outdoorsman, and conservationist, a man who has spent a lifetime in the wilderness, I am extremely worried and you should be too. Deer carrying CWD can be transported across state lines without even knowing it. Varmints such as crows and other flying carrion eaters such as vultures can fly almost anywhere from an infected area. It is my humble opinion, and the opinion of many others such as the National Deer Alliance, that within a decade there may be no deer left. Hunters have no idea how bad this could get. According to the NDA, 24 states have now reported CWD. The population model suggests that someday we will no longer hunt the deer species.
Okay, put all the science away, put all the quotes in little boxes and take Tred Barta’s advice: Before eating white-tail and mule deer have it checked for CWD prior to consumption until we can learn more about what is going on. We should not be moving carcasses from one state to another before testing.
Many people suggest that to learn more about CWD, go to CWD-info.org.
Some simple common sense rules make sense to me. Do not shoot an elk or deer that looks sick. Test your game for CWD before eating. Wear rubber gloves when boning out the meat from the animal and minimize handling of the brain and spinal cord tissue when field dressing the animal.
I would like to thank Josh Rouse, whose article was published by the Topeka Capital Journal. I used his article as a great resource for my article. I give him full credit for his work.
We live in a world of immediate gratification. If you don’t want to spend a week in elk camp, hiking and riding from morning ’til night, finding your trophy, you can just walk into a fenced in area and have your trophy within an hour. If you don’t want to sit in a deer blind, tree stand or stalk for days to shoot a trophy buck, then you can easily get your deer inside of a fence. Unfortunately what you do has consequences to the entire world.
I believe that regulated fence hunting will soon be shutdown around the world — just my opinion. I do not condemn anything which is legal. But my opinion still stands. When you fool around with God’s creatures, when you alter the natural state of the ebb and flow of nature, when you feed deer, elk and Africa’s plains game chicken food and other high protein, inexpensive foods which are laced with antibiotics, vitamins and hormones, watch out. You have a perfect storm.
CWD has moved outside of the fences and across the American breadbasket. If you don’t think we are in trouble, you are a fool. I pray that we can get control of these diseases which are highly communicable before it is too late. I am afraid that a young child will drop dead from CWD soon. I pray that it is not your child. Take a minute and have your game checked and if it is okay, enjoy the greatest wild meat, high in protein and low in fat, healthy as it can get from God’s table. If it has to do with the great outdoors, it has to do with Tred.