On Feb. 15, the same day that the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources announced it discovered chronic wasting disease in a wild deer in Crow Wing County, Gov. Tim Walz announced new funding proposals to combat the fatal neurological disease.
The Governor’s proposal of $4.57 million over the next two fiscal years, and $1.1 million annually thereafter, would aim to enhance the DNR’s surveillance capabilities and rapid response to disease detection. Walz also is proposing $208,000 in 2020 and $529,000 starting in 2021 to the state Board of Animal Health to improve their monitoring and practices surrounding farmed deer and CWD.
The Minnesota DNR will implement a swift response with the goal of eliminating the disease from the areas where it has been found. They also will determine where deer are located near Crow Wing County by working with conservation officers and wildlife staff and by conducting an aerial survey.
This is the first time the Minnesota DNR has confirmed the disease outside of southeastern Minnesota. Previous discoveries of the disease in wild deer have been concentrated predominantly in Fillmore County, with additional discoveries in Houston and Winona counties in the past two months.