Recent news from a state game & fish agency shows the continued focus and research on the nefarious Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). Researchers from the Wyoming Game & Fish Department, in partnership with University of Alberta, are potentially making headway on a vaccination for CWD.
While vaccinations for protein-based diseases like CWD are very difficult to prove effective, I appreciate the fact that researchers and big game managers are pulling out all the stops in their research to see which method may be best at curbing the spread of CWD, especially before making any rash management decisions.
The report of this potentially effective vaccine on elk at the southern Wyoming Tom Thorne and Beth Williams Wildlife Research Center does come with cautious optimism due to the small sample size of 12 elk in captivity. Effectiveness on free-ranging ungulates is obviously still unknown, and logistics of administering a vaccine to wild populations would be difficult at best.
However, researchers keep digging into various management options for CWD, and that’s a good thing. You can watch the Wyoming Game & Fish Commission meeting where these findings were reported by clicking here.