A deer with chronic wasting disease has been found in Jackson County for the first time, state officials announced today.

Additionally, another deer with the always-fatal disease was found in Dubuque County, and two more were reported in Clayton County. 

Chronic wasting disease primarily affects deer and elk and is spread through fluids such as saliva and blood. Sick animals lose weight, display abnormal behaviors such as excessive salivation and lose bodily functions.

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources reported that the second CWD-positive deer in Dubuque County was found near U.S. 151 between Dubuque and Cascade, while the deer in Jackson County was in the northern part of the county. 

Both were not far outside of the existing Dubuque disease management zone, established by the DNR after the first Dubuque County confirmed case was found in a deer killed by a vehicle outside of Dubuque in 2018.

“Although we expect some spread just outside of our existing zones, it’s not what we like to see,” said Tyler Harms, deer program leader for the Iowa DNR, in a press release. “We will reassess the boundaries of our existing zones to encompass these new positives.”

In all, 21 more wild deer in the state were found to have CWD. With two more cases, Clayton County now has had about 15.

To date, 111 wild deer have tested positive for the disease since it was confirmed in Iowa in 2013. The disease has not been confirmed in Delaware or Jones counties. 

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