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Voluntary Chronic Wasting Disease Herd Certification Program Annual Update, FY2020

U.S. Department of Agriculture
Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) Veterinary Services
Annual Update from the Cervid Health Team
Voluntary Chronic Wasting Disease Herd Certification Program (HCP)

The APHIS National CWD Herd Certification Program (HCP) was implemented in 2014. It is a voluntary Federal-State-industry cooperative program administered by APHIS and implemented by participating States. The program provides uniform national herd certification standards that minimize the risk of spreading CWD in farmed cervid populations. Participating States and herd owners must comply with requirements for animal identification, fencing, recordkeeping, inspections/inventories, as well as animal mortality testing and response to any CWD-exposed, suspect, and positive herds. APHIS monitors the Approved State HCPs to ensure consistency with Federal standards through annual reporting by the States.

With each year of successful surveillance, herds participating in the HCP will advance in status until reaching five years with no evidence of CWD, at which time herds are certified as being low risk for CWD. Only farmed cervids from enrolled herds certified as low risk for CWD may move interstate. FY 2020 marks the eighth year that Approved States have submitted their CWD HCP annual reports to APHIS.

The current Cervid Health Program staff officers are as follows: Dr. Mark Lyons, Dr. Jennifer Siembieda, and Dr. Tracy Nichols

Voluntary Herd Certification Participation Summary

  • Currently, 28 States participate in the voluntary CWD Herd Certification Program encompassing 2,145 enrolled herds, of which, 1,723 had the certified status in the program.
  • 1,616 enrolled deer herds, of which, 1,297 were certified
  • 371 enrolled elk herds, of which, 328 were certified
  • 147 enrolled mixed species herds, of which, 98 were certified

CWD in Farmed Cervids Summary of CW Detections

  • There were 22 newly identified CWD positive herds in FY20
  • 13 of these herds were not participants in the Federal HCP
  • 2 herds were considered enrolled in the HCP
  • 7 herds were certified in the HCP
  • Half of the herds were located within 20 miles of identified CWD in the wild, half were not

CWD Herds by State

  • Pennsylvania: Eight new CWD positive herds
    • Breeding herd of 33 WTD, HCP certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity
    • Breeding herd of 6 WTD, not in HCP, depopulated with Federal indemnity
    • Breeding herd of 15 WTD, not in HCP, depopulated by owner\
    • Hunt preserve of 58 WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
    • Breeding herd of 75 WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
    • Breeding herd of WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
    • Breeding herd of 90 WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
    • Breeding herd of 4 WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
  • Iowa: Two new CWD positive herds
    • Breeding herd of 23 WTD, HCP certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity
    • Breeding herd of 13 WTD, HCP certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity
  • Minnesota: Two new CWD positive herds
    • Breeding herd of 3 WTD, enrolled in HCP, not certified, depopulated by owner
    • Breeding herd of 6 WTD, enrolled in HCP, not certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity
  • Colorado: Two new CWD positive herds
    • Breeding herd/hunt preserve of 9 elk, HCP certified, depopulated by owner
    • Breeding herd of 8 elk, HCP certified, populated and under quarantine
  • Utah: Two new CWD positive herds
    • Breeding herd of 465 elk, not in HCP, partial depopulation with Federal indemnity-
      removed purchased animals, populated-quarantine
    • Breeding herd of 103 elk, not in HCP, partial depopulation with Federal indemnity-
      removed purchased animals, populated-quarantine
  • Michigan: One new CWD positive herd
    • Hunt preserve of >600 WTD, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
  • Montana: One new CWD positive herd
    • Breeding herd of 3 elk, not in HCP, populated and under quarantine
  • Texas: one new CWD positive herd
    • Breeding herd of 59 WTD, not in HCP, depopulated with Federal indemnity
  • Kansas: One new CWD positive herd
    • Breeding herd of 20 elk, HCP certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity
  • Ohio: Eight new CWD positive herd
    • Breeding herd of 138 WTD, HCP certified, depopulated with Federal indemnity

Research

  • Whole genome study investigating the association of genetics with CWD susceptibility has been published.
  • Blinded validation of the genetic predicative model is almost complete
  • A standardized protocol has been developed, in partnership with ARS, USGS, University of WI, and NIH for tissue sample testing using RT-QuIC
  • A study is starting shortly to determine the sensitivity and specify of RT-QuIC utilizing the standardized protocol

Cervid Tuberculosis

  • TB Rule
    • The USDA assembled a State/Federal working group to develop the text of the proposed rule
    • An initial draft was completed in July, 2020
    • The working group developed a new proposal to eliminate the current prevalence-based system and replace with State-consistent program
    • Cattle health team is reviewing the draft
    • Proposed rule will likely be submitted for the spring or fall of 2021
  • DPP Test Kit Shortage
    • Shortages caused cervid testing delays
    • Kits produced exclusively by a single company
    • Kit were ordered in January with an expected arrival date of February, arrive in May
    • NVSL completed the backlog of 6000 tests
    • NVSL and Cervid Health are evaluating inventory control methods to avoid future shortages
  • DPP Testing
    • In FY 2020, 12,034 cervids were tested for bovine TB using the DPP® Vet TB Assay. In FY 2020, primary DPP serological testing identified 36 TB suspects; 16 of these animals had non-negative when retested. Fifteen were necropsied and were negative on culture. 2,762 animals were tested with the Single Cervical Test. Forty four were responders, 43 were negative on the CCT leaving one reactor.
  • Mule/Sika DPP Pilot Project
    • The pilot project continues
    • 101 Mule deer samples submitted in FY20
    • 48 Sika deer samples submitted in FY20
    • The project will require 306 samples from each species to conduct the evaluation for official use in these species
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