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Author Topic: MT: Disease Testing Continues in Select Hunting Areas  (Read 319 times)

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MT: Disease Testing Continues in Select Hunting Areas
« on: November 06, 2009, 12:06:16 PM »
Montana: Disease Testing Continues in Select Hunting Areas

Ron Selden
Thursday, November 05, 2009
Hunting - Region 6

As in past years, hunters, outfitters, landowners, and others in portions of southern and north-central Montana are being asked to help with studies of two serious wildlife diseases.

For brucellosis testing, elk hunters in the southern part of the state are asked to place a blood-collection kit in their pack prior to going afield and to collect a blood sample shortly after harvesting an elk. The small, lightweight kits and instructions are available at Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks offices in Bozeman, Billings, and Helena. Kits can also be found at many trailhead kiosks in southern Montana hunting districts that surround Yellowstone National Park.

For a chronic wasting disease study, elk, deer and moose hunters in southern Montana, and in areas in and near the Charles M. Russell Wildlife Refuge (including Hunting Districts 410, 417, 621, 622, 631, 632, 652 and 700), are asked to donate heads from their harvested game. Hunters can drop off heads at hunter check stations, FWP offices and at some meat processors.

Test results from elk-blood samples will help FWP more accurately establish the location of brucellosis in wildlife, complete wildlife and livestock risk assessments, and determine if wildlife or livestock management practices need adjustment.

Brucellosis is a contagious bacterial infection in domestic animals, wildlife and humans worldwide. In Montana, brucellosis has been detected in elk, bison and recently in cattle that may have been exposed to the disease via wildlife. In July, however, federal officials declared Montana livestock once again free of the disease and lifted export restrictions.

FWP has tested elk for brucellosis exposure for more than 20 years. Of the more than 7,000 elk tested, the only evidence of the disease in elk has occurred in the Greater Yellowstone Area north and west of Yellowstone National Park.

While past CWD testing indicates a clean bill of health for Montanaís wild deer, elk and moose herds, FWP will continue testing for the brain disease during the fall hunting seasons. CWD causes infected wildlife to lose weight and body functions, behave abnormally and eventually die. The test for CWD is done by sampling a specific portion of an animalís brain, tonsils or lymph nodes. There is no practical way to test live animals.

CWD has been confirmed in wild deer in 11 states including Utah, South Dakota, and Wyoming and in Alberta and Saskatchewan. FWP has tested more that 16,000 wild deer, elk, and moose for CWD since 1998. None have tested positive for the disease.

In FWPís Region 6, biologists are also asking upland bird hunters to deposit a wing from harvested birds in small blue collection barrels scattered around select areas of southern Valley and Phillips counties.

While sage grouse are being targeted, the wings of other upland species will be accepted for analysis. Hunters are reminded that one fully feathered wing must be naturally attached for species identification when the game birds are being transported.


Courtesy of Mt.gov
The only purpose of bread is to hold meat!

John Andrews Is My Hero!

In all seriousness, the Marlin is a great rifle, too. I own a Model 60, one of the best rifles ever made.
Brownings are nice, but in terms of quality AND accuarcy AND ruggedness, it's hard to beat the Marlin.
California sucks that's it.

 


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