New Mexico Disease of Deer Archive - New Mexico


Some links to the original article may no longer be active, but the link will go to the original source where the full article may be found by searching that website. A snippet of information is saved here from copyrighted articles.


Authorities investigating deaths of more than 100 elk in NE New Mexico, August 28, 2013 The Republic

... The Department of Game and Fish is investigating the deaths of more than 100 elk in northeastern New Mexico that may be linked to a virus. [EHD] ...


Chronic wasting cases in deer, elk prompt NM game officials to expand control area September 17, 2012 New Mexico, The Republic

... The agency says all of game management units 34, 28 and 19 have been designed as control areas. Those include Fort Bliss and White Sands ranges...


Chronic Wasting Disease CWD Cases Confirmed In New Mexico 2013 and 2014 Update 2015 March 25, 2015

... year 2013 there were 3 elk confirmed positive for CWD in New Mexico... two positive cases to date in deer in the state of New Mexico early 2014...


Chronic wasting disease found in deer and elk September 20, 2016 New Mexico, Ruidoso News

... Five deer harvested in the McGregor Range area of southern New Mexico during the 2015-2016 hunting season have tested positive for chronic wasting disease ... First discovered in New Mexico in 2002, chronic wasting disease has only been found in the state’s southern hunting units...


Department Expands Chronic Wasting Disease Control Areas September 17, 2012 New Mexico Department of Game and Fish

Chronic wasting disease in deer and elk in southern New Mexico has prompted the Department of Game and Fish to expand areas where hunters must observe special rules pertaining to the handling and transportation of animal carcasses. The Department has designated the entire Game Management Units 34, 28 and 19 as Chronic Wasting Disease Control Areas. Previously, only portions of some units were designated as control areas.

Department rules allows hunters who take a deer or elk within a control area to transport only certain portions of the carcass outside the boundaries of the Game Management Unit from which it was taken. Those portions include: Meat that is cut and wrapped, either commercially or privately. Quarters or other portions of meat with no part of the spinal column or head attached. Meat that has been boned out. Hides with no heads attached. Clean skull plates with antlers attached. Clean is defined as having been immersed in a bath of at least one part chlorine bleach and two parts water, with no meat or tissue attached. Antlers, with or without velvet, attached to skull plate with no meat or tissue attached. Upper canine teeth, also known as “buglers,” whistlers,” or “ivories.” Finished taxidermied heads.

Chronic wasting disease is a fatal neurological disease found in deer, elk and moose. It belongs to a family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies or prion diseases. The disease attacks the brains of infected deer, elk and moose, causing the animals to become emaciated, display abnormal behavior and incoordination, and eventually die.

To date, ongoing investigations by state and federal public health officials have shown no causal relationship between CWD and human health problems.

Hunters can assist the Department in its chronic wasting disease research and tracking efforts by submitting deer or elk heads for testing within 48 hours of harvest at a field-testing station within a control area. Hunters who harvest deer or elk outside a control area can submit heads for testing at any Department office. Participating hunters will be entered into a special drawing for transferrable elk or oryx licenses.


NMSU Wildlife Society tests for chronic wasting disease in Sacremento Mountains November 4, 2013 New Mexico, Las Cruces Sun-News

... The NMSU Wildlife Society currently has a $5,000 contract with New Mexico Game and Fish to test tissue samples of deer and elk for chronic wasting disease. Students go out for about 20 weekends to conduct testing on deer and elk for chronic wasting disease... "Some of the deer have tested positive," ...



Origin of Chronic Wasting Disease in New Mexico

Chronic wasting disease in deer can be managed August 20, 2015 Texas, The Times Herald

... Years ago, mule deer were taken from northern Colorado — ground zero for CWD — and used in southern New Mexico to help declining populations of the animal. The first case of CWD in Texas came from animals that entered from New Mexico... Testing more wild deer and elk for CWD is a good first step. But researchers are working on live-animal CWD tests and vaccines...

Lane Laning is a wildlife manager and partner at a wildlife ranch outside of Brownwood, Texas



Some Facts about CWD in New Mexico, 2020, NEW MEXICO DEPARTMENT OF GAME & FISH


- CWD is the acronym for Chronic Wasting Disease

- New Mexico Department of Game and Fish began testing suspect deer for CWD in the 1990’s

- The first case of CWD in New Mexico was confirmed in 2002. This was a deer from Main Post on White Sands Missile Range

- Since 2002, CWD has been detected in both free-ranging deer and elk. Found in Units 19, 28, and 34

- In New Mexico, CWD has not been found in any Class A Game Park

... In December [2002], persons from National Park Service and Colorado Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory came to New Mexico to capture deer at the White Sands cantonment area. High winds hampered capture with clover traps, and chemical immobilization was difficult. Of 5 deer killed or captured, 3 were positive with CWD.


SCWDS BRIEFS, July 2002, Vol. 18, No. 2

... On June 19, 2002, the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish (NM DGF) announced that CWD had been confirmed in New Mexico for the first time in a free-ranging mule deer at the White Sands Missile Range. The animal was collected on March 28, 2002, and tested because it had clinical signs of CWD (emaciation and neurological disease), again emphasizing the importance of targeted CWD surveillance. The origin of CWD in this instance remains unknown because there are no known captive cervid facilities in the vicinity, which is several hundred miles from Colorado's endemic area...


CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE OF DEER AND ELK: A CALL FOR NATIONAL MANAGEMENT Environmental Law

Vol. 33, No. 4 (Fall 2003), pp. 1059-1092 (34 pages) Published by: Lewis & Clark Law School

... Because few CWD monitoring programs were in place before the 1990s, many alternative livestock operations have imported deer and elk from infected herds within the CWD endemic areas of northeastern Colorado, southeastern Wyoming, and western Nebraska, or from infected herds in non-endemic areas. Deer and elk from known CWD-infected alternative livestock operations were sold and transported to at least 19 states during the 1980s and 1990s. As a result, the disease has spread from the endemic areas to at least 69 captive deer and elk herds in at least 9 states, 2 Canadian provinces, and South Korea. It is also believed that alternative livestock operations may be one mechanism for the spread of CWD into free-ranging cervid populations in non-endemic areas...


Elk herd euthanized; results to take 5 years - The Oklahoman, Sep 5, 2002

... In June, the mysterious disease showed up for the first time in New Mexico in a mule deer killed in a remote area near the White Sands Missile Range. There is no known explanation for how the mule deer became infected because it was hundreds of miles away from a game farm where it might have picked up the disease. And Colorado's infected wild deer are more than 500 miles away...


CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE SURVEILLANCE PROGRAM 2002–2004. Included in Forest Wildlife Populations and Research Group... Generally, wild cervid CWD occurrences outside the endemic area have been located in close proximity to captive cervid facilities with past or present infected animals, except for 4 positive deer located at White Sands Missile Base, New Mexico...


Chronic Wasting Disease and Potential Transmission to Humans. Emerg Infect Dis. 2004 Jun; 10(6): 977–984

... In 2002, samples from an emaciated, free-ranging mule deer found in White Sands, New Mexico, tested positive for CWD (1,19). No cervids have been held in captivity close to the area where the New Mexico deer was found, and the origin of the disease in this deer remains unknown. .. our current knowledge cannot explain some of the distinct foci of CWD among free-ranging animals (e.g., in New Mexico and Utah). Thus, unidentified risk factors may be contributing to the occurrence of CWD among free-ranging and captive cervid populations in some areas...


CWD Control Area Expanded in Southern N.M. September 08, 2006 New Mexico, ABQJournal

... The game agency in July confirmed that three deer captured in southern New Mexico tested positive for chronic wasting disease, bringing the total number of infected deer and elk in the state to 17. Two of the deer were caught near White Sands Missile Range near Las Cruces; the third was captured in Timberon... The first infected deer in the state was discovered in 2002 near the main post at White Sands Missile Range...


Wasting disease sneaks south August 5, 2002 High Country News

... 600 miles from any previously known outbreaks ... Game and Fish officials are unsure how chronic wasting disease spread to southern New Mexico, but believe it can be contained within the small and geographically isolated mule deer population on the missile range...


CWD DISCOVERED IN WILD DEER WITHIN MILES OF TEXAS BORDER March 26, 2012 DeerandDeerHunting

... A second mule deer was reported with CWD in 2006 on White Sands Missile Base about 75 miles north of the previous infected location...


The environmental origins of TSEs: the ferrimagneto-prion theory July, 2004 The Townsend Letter Group

... This outbreak is particularly significant, in that it represents the first cases of a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) disease recorded in a deer herd within the state of New Mexico. Furthermore, the affected herd has been confined within the perimeters of this missile range for several decades...


African Oryx White Sands, National Park, New Mexico

... Between 1969 and 1977, 95 oryx were released on White Sands Missile Range and the surrounding areas. Wild oryx were brought from the Kalahari Desert in Africa to an experimental range at Red Rock, New Mexico...



Population dynamics and control of exotic South African oryx in the Chihuahuan Desert, south-central New Mexico Human–Wildlife Interactions 13(1):158–166, Spring 2019 •

... Introductions of exotic species can benefit certain publics but can also have many unanticipated consequences. South African oryx (Oryx gazella gazella) were introduced into the Chihuahuan Desert on White Sands Missile Range (WSMR), New Mexico, USA to alleviate

a perceived lack of large mammal hunting opportunities...



... Rocky Mountain elk have been restored to virutally all sitable range in New Mexico through restocking programs (Peek, 1982) and may exceed their historical abundance (Truett, 1996) .. page 111

Peek,.J.M. (1982) Elk in Wild Animals of North America: biology, management, and economics Johns Hopkins Press


Re: OT: White Sands Safari

Post by BwanaDave » Thu Mar 12, 2009 7:19 am

... For many years the Game Commission was run by Elliot S. Barker. He had actually come to New Mexico by covered wagon and grew up on the family's homestead in the Pecos. He grew up hunting and wrote several books on the subject which can sometimes be found on Ebay. When he started working as a ranger in New Mexico Aldo Leupold was a ranger there too. Later in Barker's career he was responsible for reintroducing elk in New Mexico after they had been wiped out. A re-introduction is much more difficult than it looks and he solved many of the problems and his methods are still used today. He also figured out a game trading scheme that allowed different states to trade game for restocking thus avoiding having to get state legislatures to approve funding for the purchase of the game to be restocked...


Texas Bowhunter.com 4-29-2018

... I don't have it handy to post but White Sands was always the spot the "proved" CWD has been here all along. Later it was found that mule deer were transported to White Sands from Colorado...