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DNR: 25 percent of deer in Iowa, western Dane counties may have CWD

MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - Chronic wasting disease continues to get more prevalent in southern Wisconsin's deer population.

The DNR said Tuesday that almost one of every four adult male deer in Iowa County and western Dane County are thought to have the fatal brain disorder. The 25 percent prevalence rate among adult males is up from 20 percent a year ago, and 8 to 10 percent back in 2002 when CWD was first discovered in the Badger State.

Officials caution against comparing annual prevalence figures, because the numbers of deer that are tested varies from year-to-year. But the DNR says it's clear that infection rates are rising -- bucks are more likely to be infected than does -- and CWD rates are higher among older adults than yearlings.

Chronic wasting disease has been found in 18 Wisconsin counties, but it's mainly concentrated in two regions west of Madison, and in Rock and Walworth counties.

The state has spent around $45 million to try and control CWD in the first decade since it's been found. Federal funds covered much of the expense.

(Story courtesy of Wheeler News Service)