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From: TSS ()
Subject: HOLE IN THE FENCE MAD DEER MAKE GREAT ESCAPE TO INFECT OTHERS (who is the hole in the fence gang?)
Date: January 21, 2006 at 2:04 pm PST

Wildlife officials find only 4 deer on infected game farm

PLOVER, Wis. Sharpshooters killed only four deer at a central Wisconsin game preserve where a number of animals were found to have chronic wasting disease.

State officials had expected to find as many as 40 deer there.

They plan to meet with the preserve's owner for clues as to why so few deer were found in an enclosure where a hole found in a fence prompted concern that some deer escaped.

Sharpshooters had killed 76 deer in breeding pens on Tuesday and four additional deer about a week ago.

Authorities, though, were especially interested in the 40 or so bucks they believed were at Stan Hall's shooting preserve near Plover.

Before sharpshooters arrived, 20 of Hall's deer tested positive for chronic wasting disease.

Copyright 2006 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Posted January 18, 2006

State kills CWD-infected herds at Almond preserve

Eradication planned before recent breach in fence

By Heather Clark
Journal staff

ALMOND -- An Almond deer hunting preserve under watch for having deer test positive for chronic wasting disease in the past is being eradicated.

State officials began the task of killing the breeding and hunting herds at Buckhorn Flats, 9403 Third St., on Tuesday, closing off neighboring roads for safety purposes during the shootings.

The Portage County Sheriff's Department was called out about 6 a.m. Tuesday at the request of the state Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) to block off Second Avenue from Third Street to Highway J as a safety measure during the shootings, officials said.

The roads were re-opened to through traffic just before 11 a.m.

The killings were planned prior to the recent concern that diseased deer escaped the preserve.

Preserve owner Stan Hill discovered the fence had been cut open and food placed near the opening to bait the deer. When notified, the DATCP closed off the opening and the state Department of Natural Resources was called in. About 40 deer had been known to roam the 59 acres of fenced-in preserve.

Portage County Sher-iff's Department's investigation into that criminal damage continues.

DNR sharpshooters and other personnel remained on site until Monday afternoon, having laid bait for deer near the damaged area of the fence. During that time, four deer were killed coming back to the fenced area, said Alan Crossley, the DNR's chronic wasting disease project leader.

The group left when the DATCP said it was arriving for the scheduled eradication, and Crossley was not sure when they would return.

"Whether those are deer from inside the pen is going to be hard to know, but we felt that was the first place that made the most sense for us to set up and shoot," he said, adding that samples from those two does and two fawns are in the process of being tested.

"The remaining question is OK, is there anything we should do in the short term to try to get additional samples, and that would likely involve working with local landowners," he said.

Hill had been fighting a July 2003 order that the livestock be killed after deer from the preserve were found to have the disease. An agreement between Hill and the state and federal agriculture agencies was reached in December.

Hill's property is about 70 acres, 59 of which are in the fenced-in preserve and another fenced portion contains a breeding herd.

The breeding herd, which was closed off in a different but nearby pen, was comprised of 79 does, fawns and yearling bucks at Hill's last count. DATCP found three dead when they arrived Tuesday, which is not uncommon, said Donna Gilson, communication specialist with the state DATCP. They killed the remaining 76. The carcasses have been transported to the state's testing facility, where samples will be sent to Iowa for CWD testing. Results will take about three weeks, she said.

"We will have people in and out for the next several days," Gilson said. "Killing the hunting preserve herd is a much more complex operation because they are over a larger area, so that will take some time."

The DNR had been surveying wild deer through hunter registration in the past, and given the recent preserve breach, that likely will continue, Crossley said. But should the decision be made to continue killing wild deer outside of the preserve, it would be done in agreement with individual neighboring property owners, he said.

The killings over the weekend were set up on a neighboring property with that landowner's permission, he said.

Hill will be paid up to a maximum of $4,500 per animal from state and federal funds, Gilson said.


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