CHARLESTON, W.Va. — Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin signed the deer farm bill into law Wednesday evening.

The bill (SB 237) transfers the management of deer farms from the state Division of Natural Resources to the state Department of Agriculture.

“I have great respect for the significant economic impact hunting has in West Virginia, with more than 350,000 hunters helping to create more than 5,000 jobs and generate nearly $270 million for the state’s economy. I also respect the overwhelming bipartisan support this bill received in both the Senate and House of Delegates, passing with wide margins in both chambers,” Tomblin said in a news release. “I am confident we can protect our wildlife and maintain our state’s strong hunting tradition while expanding responsible deer farming operations across the state, creating new jobs and new opportunities for our residents and small businesses.”

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Comments

  • TERENCE HAMRICK

    I am very disappointed in all of the government officials who voted for this bill. I will be polling the vote so that I can effectively make sure that these individuals do not get my vote next election. I am also extremely disappointed in our Governor for signing this bill. This is a very BIG MISTAKE. As time will no doubt prove, this will hurt all of us, from the Hunters to the Consumer. I thought all of the LEADERS of our State had better sense that this.

  • know the facts

    Charleston guess where The deer came from at that wildlife research facility in colorado where cwd was first found.From the wild by DNR.

  • More BS

    Omg, so captive deer are the source of the disease. That's BS. The is no control group or source yet.

    • Charleston

      That fact hasn't been substantiated and probably never will be. But the fact can't be disputed that it was in fact discovered in a research facility in a wildlife research facility in northern Colorado where cervid captivity was taking place. That's all.

    • thornton

      Not an only source of CWD but certainly a breeding ground and transferance device under bad luck and worse management.....not that either would ever happen in WV.

      As Phil Harris sang...the dice the farmers short-rolled appeared to be one of 5s and one of 2s.
      WV101.

      The world will spin for those with spin....no change there.

  • thornton

    All the deer farms will be mindful of their Ps and Qs for a spell...new installations especially so as AG bends to their task.
    The problem may come down the road a piece, as shown in Ohio and elsewhere, regarding disease and operational issues with deer farms...i.e. Yoder.
    ERT will not be involved at that time.
    Typical politico thinking re a pen.

    It was indeed humorous to hear the AG guy on Hoppy today mention "less restriction"......what a world.
    The lad will need to think a bit in the future before being so honest in a public comment on AG's view.

    I do wonder if the dog track folks will use any buyout money to enter the deer farm business....ERT???? Retirement???

    Wow, look at the time...best head to the Blennerhasset for a deer burger!

    • Stop the whining

      Stop the nay saying.......give it a chance, and Thornton, like all things and programs....erosion of the regulatory environment occurs. Nothing is perfect. We need more progressive thought and bill passing. Get this state out of the dark ages and out of the good ole boys pockets please.

      • thornton

        It's nice that the Dept.of AG gives such confidence that mistakes a state away will not be repeated.
        It must be AG's history.....a history replete with those "pockets."

        Plus, the AG fella's comments on Hoppy today illustrated that "erosion of the regulatoiry environment" appears already well in hand.

        No matter, it's just deer and a good deer burger can be fine chow.

  • know the facts

    Rick more uneducated comments.

  • rick

    So I presume now that some folks won't have to hunt they can go down to the deer farm and buy a couple. If farmed deer get out and a car hits them is it the same as a domestic cow now or a wild deer. One has liability for the farmer and the other to the car owner.

  • know the facts

    buck hunter you are worried about the CWD coming to your hunting spot ? Then you must be scared to death about the elk restoration because the last I heard they can get CWD.so what side of the fence are you on ? just shows how stupid some people are.

    • buckhunter

      well aware all cervids can carry cwd, the point was import elk and expose them to cwd. please read up on pennsylvanna recent cwd history with deer farms.

    • Charleston

      KTF presumes to "know the facts" huh? The Chief of Staff just stated that there will be less RESTRICTION in regards to how the deer farm is regulated. Period. Enough Said. If you want to throw in the scare tactic with regards to elk reintroduction to the argument I am fine with that presumption and agree with you. We need to be careful with our management for the whole rather than a few.

  • joyful

    Thank you Lord from who all blessings flow.

  • buckhunter

    Earl can't even protect our water, or miners. Hope everybody that voted for this is happy. coming soon to your favorite deer woods, chronic wasting disease, also this places the elk restoration at risk.

  • Charleston

    Thanks Earl Ray:CHRONOLOGY OF SIGNIFICANT EVENTS IN THE HISTORY OF CHRONIC WASTING DISEASE.


    Year Event
    1967 CWD was first identified as a clinical disease in captive mule deer at the Colorado Division of Wildlife Foothills Wildlife Research Facility in Fort Collins, Colorado.
    1978 CWD was officially classified as a Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE). TSE's include scrapie in sheep and goats, Mad Cow disease in cattle, and Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease in humans.
    1979 CWD was first recognized in captive mule deer and black-tailed deer at the Wyoming Fish and Game Department's Sybille wildlife research facility.

    CWD was diagnosed in captive elk for the first time.
    1981 The Colorado Division of Wildlife identified CWD in a wild elk, marking the first documented case of CWD in a wild cervid.
    1985 The Colorado Division of Wildlife confirmed the presence of CWD in a wild mule deer for the first time.

    The Colorado Division of Wildlife attempted to eliminate CWD from the Fort Collins Foothills Wildlife Research Facility by treating the soil with chlorine, removing the treated soil, and applying an additional chlorine treatment before letting the facility remain vacant for more than a year. The effort was unsuccessful.

    The Wyoming Fish and Game Department identified CWD in a wild mule deer, marking the state's first case of CWD in a wild cervid.
    1996 CWD was found for the first time outside of the Colorado/Wyoming CWD "endemic zone" in a captive elk farm in Saskatchewan.
    1997 CWD is identified on several captive elk facilities in South Dakota, marking the first documented cases of CWD in the state.
    1998 June 1998 and again in June 1999, elk shipped to Oklahoma from an alternative livestock facility near Philipsburg were confirmed to have CWD.
    1999 The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission discovered CWD in a wild mule deer, the state's first documented case of the disease.

    CWD is detected in a captive elk facility in Oklahoma, marking the first time the disease was found in the state.

    In November and December 1999, all 83 elk at the Philipsburg facility in Montana (the source of the CWD captive positive in Oklahoma) were destroyed.
    2000 CWD was found in a Saskatchewan mule deer, marking the first time the disease was found in the province's wild cervids.
    2001 South Dakota discovered CWD in wild white-tailed deer for the first time.

    Nebraska discovered CWD in a captive white-tailed deer facility for the first time
    2002 The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources detected CWD in wild white-tailed deer, the state's first documented case of CWD.

    The New Mexico Department of Game and Fish discovered CWD in a mule deer near White Sands Missile Range. This is the first case of CWD in the state of New Mexico.

    The Minnesota Board of Animal Health confirmed the presence of CWD in a captive elk, the state's first documented case of the disease.

    The 1st International CWD Symposium was held in Denver, Colorado.

    The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources detected CWD in a captive white-tailed deer, the state's first documented case of CWD in captive cervids.

    Saskatchewan detected CWD in a mule deer outside of the province's previously delineated CWD containment area.

    The Illinois Department of Natural Resources discovered CWD in a wild white-tailed deer, the state's first documented case of CWD.

    The South Dakota Department of Game, Fish and Parks discovered CWD in wild elk from the Wind Cave National Park. This documented the first case of CWD found in the state's wild elk populations.

    The first case of CWD in Alberta was found at a white-tailed deer farm near Edmonton.

    Wyoming confirmed the first case of CWD in a mule deer west of the Continental Divide.


    2003 The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources detected CWD in a wild mule deer, marking the state's first case of CWD.

    A dot blot ELISA test for CWD, developed by VMRD, Inc., was licensed for CWD testing.

    United States Department of Agriculture licensed a CWD dot plot (ELISA) test developed by VMRD, Inc. The test analyzes retropharyngeal lymph node samples and has a turnaround time of approximately 24 hours.

    U.S. Senator Wayne Allard (R-CO) introduced a comprehensive bi-partisan bill targeted at coordinating and increasing federal response to CWD management.

    Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI) introduced two bills created to assist states in combating the spread of CWD; the National Chronic Wasting Disease Task Force Establishment Act and the Chronic Wasting Disease Research, Monitoring, and Education Enhancement Act.

    The United States Department of Agriculture approved a second-generation CWD test developed by Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc.

    Congress approved a bill that includes $4.2 million to expand research on CWD in wild deer and elk populations.


    2004 Agriculture Secretary Ann M. Veneman and Health and Human Services Secretary Tommy Thompson announced creation of a federal interagency working group to identify gaps in scientific knowledge about abnormal prion proteins and promote coordination of prion research projects by federal agencies.

    CWD was set as a national priority for piloting a Wildlife Disease Action Plan by the Canadian Councils of Resource Ministers.

    The Wyoming Game and Fish Department discovered the presence of CWD for the first time on the east slope of the Snowy Range Mountains in the north-central part of the state.

    The Nebraska Game and Parks Commission confirmed a case of CWD in a white-tailed deer near the town of Grand Island. This is approximately 250 miles east of the Panhandle where all previous cases of CWD had been documented.
    2005 The Colorado Division of Wildlife identified a case of CWD in a mule deer south of Colorado Springs. This is the farthest south on the Front Range that CWD has been detected.

    The New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets confirmed the presence of CWD in a captive white-tailed deer, marking the state's first documented case of CWD.

    The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation discovered CWD in a wild white-tailed deer from Oneida County. This documented the first case of CWD found in the state's wild deer populations.

    The 2nd International CWD Symposium was held in Madison, Wisconsin.

    The first documented case of CWD in West Virginia is identified in a wild white-tailed deer.

    The Colorado Division of Wildlife confirmed the first documented case of CWD in a wild moose.

    Alberta discovered a case of CWD in a wild mule deer, marking the first time CWD was found in the province's wild cervids.

    The New Mexico Department of Fish and Game discovered CWD in two wild elk from the Sacramento Mountains, documenting the first cases of CWD found in the state's wild elk populations.
    2006 Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks discovered CWD in a white-tailed deer from Cheyenne County. This is the first time CWD was found in the state.

    Researchers at the University of Kentucky found that CWD prions are present in the leg muscles of infected deer.

    The Minnesota Board of Animal Health confirmed that a captive white-tailed deer from Lac Qui Parle County tested positive for CWD. This is the state's first case of CWD in captive white-tailed deer.

    University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers discovered that infectious prions adhere to specific soil minerals where they remain infective.

    The New Mexico Game and Fish Department identified CWD in a mule deer on the Stallion site of White Sands Missile Range, 75 miles further north of the state's northernmost infection area.

    Colorado State University researchers found that infectious prions are capable of transmitting CWD through saliva and blood.

    The Colorado Division of Wildlife reported finding two additional moose with CWD in the northern part of the state.
    2007 The first white-tailed deer to test positive for CWD in Alberta was identified by the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

    The Utah Division of Wildlife Resources published an e-book addressing various modeling approaches to describe the spatial epidemiology of CWD.

    Research from the University of Wisconsin-Madison revealed that the infectivity of prions significantly increases when they are bound to certain soil minerals.
    2008 The first cases of CWD in Saskatchewan's wild elk population are found in the province's east-central region.

    Researchers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and Colorado State University developed a new pre-mortem CWD test for elk.

    The Michigan Department of Natural Resources detected CWD in a captive white-tailed deer from Kent County. This is state's first documented case of CWD.

    The Wyoming Game and Fish Department discovered CWD in a wild moose. This is the first time a moose infected with CWD is found outside of Colorado.

    Elk meat sold at a Longmont, Colorado farmers market was found to come from a captive elk infected with CWD.


    2009 Researchers found that prions are shed in the feces of early-stage CWD-infected deer.

    Colorado State University researchers were granted $2.5 million from the National Science Foundation to study transmission of CWD.


    2010 The first documented case of CWD in Virginia is identified in a wild white-tailed deer.

    The Missouri Department of Agriculture discovers the state's first case of CWD in a captive white-tailed deer.

    The first documented case of CWD in North Dakota is identified in a wild mule deer.


    2011 Minnesota's first documented case of CWD in a wild cervid is identified in a white-tailed deer.

    The first documented case of CWD in Maryland is identified in a wild white-tailed deer.


    2012 The first cases of CWD in Missouri's free-ranging cervids are found in two white-tailed deer.

    CWD detected in far west Texas

    CWD Found in Deer at Iowa Hunting Preserve.

    First case of CWD found in captive Pennsylvania deer.
    2013 First documented cases of CWD found in Blair and Bedford counties in Pennsylvania wild white-tailed deer.


    2014 Chronic wasting disease detected for first time in wild Iowa deer.

    First case of chronic wasting disease confirmed in Ohio on private preserve.

    • Shadow

      A very good summary of CWD for all of us. The only question I have is how much of the identification of CWD is due to much better scientific methods of analysis today than there was 100 years ago?

  • know the facts

    Thank you Governor Tomblin. job well done.

    • Charleston

      Fact:
      HAMPSHIRE COUNTY, W.Va. – With the cooperation of local landowners, the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources (DNR) tested 152 deer collected from within one to two miles of previously known locations of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) infected deer. Testing detected the CWD agent in a total of 12 white-tailed deer sampled during the 2010 spring collections in Hampshire County, according to the DNR.

      The detection of 15 CWD positive deer during the fall 2009 hunting season, combined with this spring’s testing results, has required the expansion of the CWD Containment Area to include all of Hampshire County. Within the CWD Containment Area, supplemental feeding and baiting of deer is prohibited and there are transport restrictions for deer carcasses leaving the county.

      The spring CWD monitoring of deer provides an incidence rate of infected CWD deer in the area of established infection and removes CWD positive deer from the landscape. In addition, wildlife biologists also use the information to monitor changes in age structure and reproduction in the deer herd within the established CWD infected area.

      The first case of CWD in West Virginia was confirmed on September 2, 2005. Since that time, the DNR has been fully engaged in activities guided by its CWD Incident Response Plan, which is designed to accomplish the following objectives:
      •Determine the distribution and prevalence of CWD through enhanced surveillance efforts.

      •Communicate and coordinate with the public and other appropriate agencies on issues relating to CWD and the steps being taken to respond to this disease.

      •Initiate appropriate management actions necessary to control the spread of this disease and prevent further introduction of the disease.

      To date, CWD surveillance efforts conducted by the DNR have resulted in a total of 74 deer being confirmed positive for CWD in Hampshire County. Ongoing and extensive surveillance efforts being conducted by Wildlife Resources Section personnel throughout West Virginia has not detected CWD outside of Hampshire County.

      CWD is a neurological disease found in deer and elk and belongs to a family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies. The disease is currently accepted as being caused by abnormal, proteinaceous particles called prions that slowly attack the brain of infected deer and elk. Animals progressively become emaciated, display abnormal behavior and invariably die as a result of the disease. There is no known treatment for CWD and it is fatal for the infected deer or elk. It is important to note that currently, there is no evidence to suggest CWD poses a risk for humans or domestic animals.

      “Landowner and hunter cooperation throughout this entire CWD response effort in Hampshire County continues to be excellent,” noted DNR Director Frank Jezioro. “As we strive to meet this wildlife disease challenge and implement appropriate management strategies, the support and involvement of landowners and hunters remains essential. The DNR is committed to keeping the public informed and involved in these wildlife disease management actions.”

    • Charleston

      FACT:
      Managing CWD in free-ranging animals presents even greater challenges. Long-term, active surveillance programs to monitor CWD distribution and prevalence have been instituted in the endemic area to determine the extent of the endemic area and to assist in evaluating both temporal changes and effects of management intervention. Management programs established to date focus on containing CWD and reducing its prevalence in localized areas. Ultimate management goals vary among affected states and provinces. In areas where CWD may not yet be endemic, eradication could be considered as an ultimate goal for CWD management. In endemic states like Colorado and Wyoming however, managers have refrained from committing to eradication because it appears unattainable in their situations.

      • WVU Common Tater

        WV DNR is great at monitoring. It means more jobs but does very little to help the problem.

    • Charleston

      FACT:
      In captive facilities, management options currently are limited to quarantine or depopulation of CWD-affected herds. Two attempts to eradicate CWD from cervid research facilities failed; the causes of these failures were not determined, but residual environmental contamination following depopulation and/or facility clean-up was likely in both cases. Attempts to eliminate CWD from farmed elk populations are more recent, and consequently the efficacy of these attempts remains uncertain. Whether contaminated environments can ever be completely disinfected remains questionable. Until effective cleaning and disinfection procedures are identified, captive cervids should not be reintroduced into commercial facilities where CWD has occurred; moreover, free-ranging cervids also should be excluded from previously-infected premises. Establishment of free-ranging reservoirs of infection in the vicinity of infected game farms, as exemplified by probable cases in Saskatchewan and Nebraska, could severely impair attempts at eradication from captive facilities. Inherent difficulties in managing infected herds and premises underscore the need for aggressive surveillance to prevent movements of infected animals in commerce.

  • Finally a smart move

    Finally, some progressive movement. Now start passing the crossbow bill, charter schools bill, more jobs bills, etc.

  • ThatGuyOverThere

    Huge mistake Earl.

    • wvbowhunter

      BS. Huge mistake!