CWD infects wild deer in Grand Rapids, DNR to update response plan

State wildlife officials say after Chronic wasting disease (CWD) was detected in a wild deer located in Grand Rapids, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is being forced to update its response plan.

Tuesday, the agency reported it received confirmation of the CWD infection on March 15.

The DNR reports 2004 was the last time it conducted active CWD surveillance in the area where the infected deer was found. The DNR adds it has conducted CWD surveillance in the areas to the north, west and south of Grand Rapids more recently.

“We’ve always looked at CWD as a disease that could impact the entire state, yet implemented disease management actions as needed in each area where CWD was found,” Kelly Straka, the DNR’s wildlife section manager, said in a statement. “This new discovery doesn’t make CWD a statewide problem, but it does mean we need to take more of a statewide approach.”

As a result of this latest CWD infection report, the DNR states it will update its response plan this spring, investigate options for hunters to use a self-mailing kit for free testing statewide, expand the statewide Partner Sampling Program, and upgrade and improve the current design of self-service stations.

Learn more about the effects of CWD via the DNR here.