Last March, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources discovered chronic wasting disease in a wild deer in Dakota County.
Chronic Wasting Disease is an always-fatal neurological disease that affects the cervid family, which includes deer, elk and moose. Since it was first detected in a captive elk in Minnesota in 2002, the DNR has tested more than 90,000 wild deer. To date, 88 wild deer have been confirmed positive for CWD in Minnesota.
Since last March, the DNR has expanded the list of counties where deer feeding and attractant are banned, to prevent deer from congregating and spreading the disease. Most of those counties are in northern and eastern Minnesota.
However, the DNR will soon drop several counties closer to southwest Minnesota from those with deer feeding and attractant bans. The DNR has not detected Chronic Wasting Disease in any wild deer for the third-consecutive year of wild deer disease testing in central Minnesota.
Starting July 1, Kandiyohi, McLeod, Meeker, Renville and Wright counties, and the portion of Renville County north of U.S. Highway 212, will no longer have deer feeding bans in effect.