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Hemorrhagic Disease Outbreak in Louisiana White-tailed Deer October 26, 2012

Louisiana Deer Disease News Archive

 The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries (LDWF) has received numerous reports of dead and dying white-tailed deer this fall.  The reports have come primarily from the parishes that border the Mississippi River in south Louisiana but scattered reports have come in from all over the state.  Many of these deaths can be attributed to hemorrhagic disease.  Hemorrhagic disease (HD) is a viral disease syndrome caused by either epizootic hemorrhagic disease virus (EHDV) or bluetongue virus (BTV).  These Orbiviruses are related but are genetically different.  They are spread by biting gnats of the genus Culicoides, resulting in seasonal occurrence of HD.  Typically, factors that favor the vectors are a rainy spring followed by a dry June.  Events such as flooding which congregate deer also seem to worsen disease outbreaks.  HD is not contagious to people and consumption of meat from HD-infected animals poses no threat to humans.... Hunters are encouraged to report sick and dying deer to their regional LDWF office.

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