Texas Deer Breeder Movement Standards Plan finalized


Written by TPWD

Texas deer breeders will be able to resume animal movements under a plan finalized today by staff of the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Texas Animal Health Commission.

The Breeder Deer Movement Qualification Standards Plan will take effect upon the filing of Emergency Rules by TPWD and will be in place through the 2015-16 Texas hunting season. Details of the plan are available online at www.tpwd.texas.gov/cwd.

Key elements of the plan include:

  • A framework giving breeders who met previous movement qualified standards an option to move and liberate deer. Movement qualification is also dependent on administrative compliance with deer breeder permit regulations and statutes.
  • Enhanced options for closely-monitored herds with a status of “fifth year” or “certified” in the TAHC Monitored Herd Program. There are no additional release site requirements for ranches that receive deer only from these herds.
  • Additional Chronic Wasting Disease testing in deer breeding facilities. Under the plan, the vast majority of the 1,300 permitted deer breeders in Texas can gain movement qualified status by testing two or fewer animals.
  • There will be CWD testing requirements for a proportion of deer that are harvested on some release sites.

The goal of the Movement Qualification Plan is to provide deer breeders with options prior to the September 22 deadline for movement and liberation of bucks and before the 2015-16 hunting season. This is just one of many steps Texas is taking to mitigate the spread of CWD after it was detected in deer from a Medina County deer breeding facility earlier this summer.

“We have received and tried to be responsive to the extensive feedback from the state’s many and varied deer management interests in developing this revised plan,” said Carter Smith, TPWD Executive Director. “In the development of this framework, both agencies are balancing the need to minimize the risk of unwittingly allowing the movement or liberation of Chronic Wasting Disease-positive deer on the Texas landscape while adopting reasonable movement qualification standards that allow qualified deer breeders to begin moving and liberating captive deer. The complexity associated with the development of this framework is immense.”

A joint agency CWD Working Group will now focus efforts on developing individual herd plans for affected deer breeders and develop a plan for strategic sampling of hunter harvested deer from free-ranging populations this fall.

“Our goal was to protect the health of free-ranging and captive breeder deer, while maintaining business continuity for the breeder industry,” said Dr. Dee Ellis, TAHC Executive Director. “We believe this plan accomplishes those goals.”

Factors such as level of connectedness to the index facility, level of testing in the TAHC Monitored Herd Program, relative percentage of the overall herd that has been tested, and variable liberation criteria are all being considered in development of the herd plans.

The TAHC and TPWD are continuing the investigation of the index facility in Medina County, where 42 deer have been euthanized and tested for CWD.

“The results from the partial testing of the animals in the Index Facility, as well as samples from the CWD-exposed herds, are important to making reasonable, prudent, and responsible decisions for the remaining captive herds, neighboring landowners, and wild deer,” said Clayton Wolf, TPWD Wildlife Division director.

Copyright 2015 Lone Star Outdoor News . All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


5 Responses

  1. terry

    where is the official announcement of this 4th case (or more cases), by the TAHC and or the TPWD?

    why is the media having to do the TAHC and or the TPWD job, and reporting this critical information to the public domain?

    of course, it took 7+ months and an act of Congress to finally confirm and announce to the public that last mad cow in Texas as well. political science as usual in Texas.


    Terry S. Singeltary Sr.

    • Buckchaser

      The 4 test was not confirmed in both the Obex and Lymphnoids so it is not conclusive.

  2. Cajun Phil Broussard

    Seem to Most Hunters that there should be a way of testing the animals without Killing them..this senseless killing just to prove they don’t have CWD is Horrible & not the way it should be handled..I am with the Majority when I say I am Very Disappointed in Carter Smiths decision to just go out & Kill these Animals..Shame on him & everyone involved..Find other means of testing & Stop the Killing..
    Cajun Phil

  3. Buckchaser

    There is a live test available but USDA/Animal Health is dragging their feet as usual in approving it. It has been found to be 97% accurate which is far more accurate then the 60% accuracy of the Tuberculosis test that are used on animals. The sad part is CWD does not pass to humans, Tuberculosis does. Government thinking at its finest!

  4. James King

    In my opinion the state is not doing enough to control the spread of this disease, they should not allow transportation of any deer in Texas until this disease is isolated. Last year the breeder in Medina county sent deer to 150 different ranches and they might all be exposed. It is better to error on the side of caution and just ban transportation until more is known. TPWD should of never given in to the big ranchers and allowed pen raised deer released into the wild. The deer they are killing and testing at the Medina County facility are not the property of the deer breeder they belong to the people of Texas. If this disease gets into the wild population it might not have that big of an effect on deer but it will affect land prices and decimate the local economy of West and South Tx. dependent on the deer hunting industry. I just wonder how many families will want to go hunt and eat a deer that might or might not have CWD I know that my wife would not take the chance!