Concerns about the future of reindeer and deer because of brain disease


The brain disease CWD was in April and May discovered on a reindeer and two moose. Scientists fear that the disease has spread, which means the future of the deer family in Norway is in danger.

One dead female reindeer was diagnosed with the disease Chronic Wasting Disease in April, while the disease was detected in the two moose in Trondelag one month later, NRK reported. The only previously recorded instances of the disease have been  in the US and Canada.

-Our knowledge of the disease comes from those two countries. If they discover a single instance of the disease there,they get rid of all cervids in a radius of 20 kilometers out. If they discover two or more instances of the disease, the radius is increased to 70 km.

It will have enormous consequences in Norway if we also have to resort to shoot reindeers, moose and similar kinds of animals,  Lars Nesse, Head of  the caribou Tribunal for Northern Mountains and Fjellheimen, says.

The disease is incurable and is comparable with scrapie in sheep or BSE. The incubation period can last for several years, during this period of time, the animals can excrete pathogens through feces and urine.

During this year’s autumn hunting, the government has entered into a comprehensive collaboration with reindeer hunters on sampling of the animals killed by them.

– There is little likelihood that we have discovered the only three instances in Norway when there is a distance of over 30 Norwegian miles  between the place where we found the mooses and the place where we found the reindeer,  veterinary Kåre Rudningen Laerdal says.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today