Montana’s New CWD Management Plan to be Reviewed

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The Montana Fish and Wildlife Commission will review the final draft of the Montana Chronic Wasting Disease Management Plan at its meeting on April 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at FWP Headquarters, 1420 E. Sixth Avenue, in Helena.

Montana found its first case of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in October 2017. CWD is an always-fatal neurologic disease like mad cow disease that affects deer, elk, moose and caribou. There are no known risks to livestock or humans.

 The final draft of the plan addresses ideas and concerns presented through a public comment period and also through the work of the internal FWP CWD Action Team and the CWD Citizens Panel.

The final plan differs from earlier versions in establishing a threshold to changing management. Earlier drafts of the plan said that FWP may not need to change management if prevalence was less than 5%. However, after reviewing comments from FWP staff and researchers and managers in CWD-positive states, FWP will initiate long-term CWD management actions with any detection, even at low prevalence.

(Photo source: Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks)