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The British Deer Society is campaigning hard, along with other organisations, to keep Chronic Wasting Disease out of the UK by promoting awareness of the issue at border control points.

We encourage visitors to the UK to be vigilant about the cleanliness and biosecurity of outdoor equipment. While the highest risks appears to be with those engaged in sporting shooting, anyone hiking or camping in infected areas has the potential to bring back infection on dirty boots, clothes or equipment.


CWD Research – DNA Samples Supplied for CWD Research Project

The EU has determined that a pan European EU surveillance system to monitor deer populations to detect any fresh cases is required. One of the most significant questions is how susceptible are our deer to CWD? Will they succumb rapidly, or slowly?

The BDS is engaging in a research project to perform DNA typing of deer found in Britain to establish the extent of their susceptibility to CWD. This will assist with “modelling” how CWD might develop in the UK should it ever arrive.

Working with BDS members, Amy Robinson of the Roslin Institute has been analysing over 1,000 deer tissue samples in an effort to identify possible resistance to CWD. The research is continuing and results will be published soon.

BDS Leaflet on preventing the spread of CWD

The British Deer Society has a leaflet aimed at hunters and sporting agents containing important recommendations to prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).

The updated advice replaces previous guidance and follows an increase in risk level to the UK with the announcement of three cases of the disease in Norway. CWD has previously mainly been found in North America. Sporting agents, hosts, and guides are urged to make sure all guests to the UK are aware of the risks and take steps to ensure that their equipment is suitably clean to minimise the risk of spreading the disease. All those visiting areas at risk of infection, especially for hunting purposes, must appreciate that it is almost impossible to thoroughly sterilise potentially contaminated kit and clothing so are strongly encouraged to consider leaving behind or disposing of what cannot be completely sanitised.

BDS Report on CWD

BDS report: Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), a Transmissible Spongiform Encephalitis (TSE) of deer – An overview of the situation from the UK perspective

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