This month

2017

August

Deer Management Season Set to Begin, Connection, Aug 15, 2017The presentation was divided into three major areas of impact by the wandering ruminants: safety concerns, health concerns, and ecological damage. It is within the first and third of these concerns that the numbers can best be gathered, analysed, and used to justify the county’s management program and aid in developing the best approach.

This Technology Could Stop the World’s Deadliest Animal, Mother Jones News, Aug 14, 2017

    Scientists had been putting the CRISPR tools into their target cells as separate pieces. What if you introduced them into the embryos as a single, heritable element? Those creatures and their descendants—all of them—would retain the gene-editing ability in their DNA. The system would be self-propagating. In short, you could rig nature’s game so your gene would win every time!

    But one could build, for instance, a drive targeting Aedes mosquitoes that leaves their offspring unable to reproduce, or one that makes Anopheles mosquitoes unable to transmit malaria. You could design a drive to control a stubborn crop pest or to render white-footed mice incapable of acting as a vessel by which ticks pick up and spread Lyme disease.

Fighting phragmites a never-ending battle, MLive, Aug 8, 2017Phragmites (frag-MY-teez) is an aggressive, invasive plant that grows to 15 feet in height and has had a massive impact on the ecological health of Michigan’s wetlands and coastal shoreline. Ever-expanding stands of the grass have crowded out thousands of acres of native plants across the state in recent decades, destroying food and shelter for wildlife, blocking natural shoreline views, and reducing access for swimming, fishing and hunting.

The Deer in Your Yard Are Here to Stay, CityLab, Aug 7, 2017Then the deer came back, swimming across the Arthur Kill and Raritan Bay from New Jersey in search of new habitat. And they reproduced—boy, did they reproduce. An aerial survey of the deer population in 2014 put it at 793. By 2017, the new estimate was between 1,918 and 2,188, an increase of 9,000 percent in just nine years.
Hungry deer will eat (or trample) almost anything in a garden, becoming a pest for urban and suburban homeowners. Over-browsing by deer depletes the undergrowth of woodland, threatening birds’ habitat and the regeneration of trees. And when deer wander into the road, the results are not so cute. There are about 1.25 million collisions between cars and deer, elk, and moose annually in the United States, according to the insurer State Farm, and these cause around 150 human fatalities, and countless animal deaths, each year.

July

Going Green: Deer in Urban Areas, Spectrum News, July 31, 2017More deer are showing up in urban areas of New York.

New law allows cities to cull urban deer, but idea is DOA in Ashland, Mail Tribune, July 31, 2017 Gov. Kate Brown signed Senate Bill 373, which requires the State Fish and Wildlife Commission to adopt a pilot program for urban deer population control, into law June 14, after it passed both the House and Senate by overwhelming margins. It takes effect Jan. 1. While the state legislature has passed a bill to set up a 12-year pilot program for the “taking” (euthanizing) of excess urban deer, Ashland Mayor John Stromberg says such action doesn’t work and the city isn’t going to do it.

Deadly Deer Disease Hits Kentucky, Lex18.com, July 31, 2017A deadly deer disease is hitting the population of wildlife in eastern Kentucky. Epizootic hemorrhagic disease, also known as EHD or “Blue Tongue” is spreading in multiple counties. Reports of dead deer are being called in to fish and wildlife officials across the state.

Ann Arbor Crash Data, 2016, SEMCOG, July 2017

Staten Island’s Deer Population May Not Have Dropped This Year, City Says, DNAInfo, July 20, 2017STATEN ISLAND — An aerial survey found 266 fewer deer living in Staten Island than last year, but officials warned it doesn’t necessarily mean the population has decreased. In February, the Parks Department conducted a second aerial survey that expanded to include the entire borough, instead of just focusing on parkland, the Staten Island Advance first reported. The latest survey found only 527 white-tailed deer in the borough, down from the 793 found in parkland in 2014, according to the Parks Department.

“The aerial surveys conducted in 2014 and 2016 confirmed that deer are present on Staten Island and illustrated expanding patterns of distribution, providing data necessary to the City’s deer management strategy,” a spokeswoman for the agency said in a statement.

However, the Parks Department said that it hadn’t found evidence of deer dying off or migrating out of Staten Island and the numbers don’t mean the population has decreased. The survey only gives a minimum population number for deer and the planes have a better chance of spotting the animals when flying on cloudy days, which they did in 2014. In 2016, the surveys were done on days with clear skies, Parks said.

Use of bows, arrows mulled to cull deer, Daily Progress, July 20, 2017While public safety and animal welfare shape the management strategies and data in the state guide, Kocka said, urban communities have been particularly concerned about keeping roads and properties clear of deer that can destroy gardens, damage personal property and, in some cases, cause death.

Deer Caught in the Headlights? Your Car May Soon See Them, New York Times, July 20, 2017Automakers have already developed technologies to prevent cars from crashing into other vehicles and to recognize pedestrians entering and crossing a roadway. Now they are working to give cars the capability of avoiding animals like deer.

Colorado Springs considers urban hunters to combat deer, Denver Post, July 20, 2017Allowing urban hunting in a city the size of Colorado Springs would be unprecedented in Colorado, the Gazette reports. Wildlife officials earlier this month recommended urban hunting in Cañon City, which could join Arkansas River Valley neighbors Salida and Buena Vista in allowing deer hunting in city limits. La Veta and Alamosa also invite hunters. For a fourth year, Elizabeth, a rural community south of Denver, will issue permits to archers to thin the deer herd.

How Lyme disease might be triggering hundreds of suicides, USA Today, July 19, 2017New Jersey-based psychiatrist Dr. Robert Bransfield, estimates that as many as 1,200 of those suicides — as well as more than 14,000 incidents of self-harm and 31,000 suicide attempts — may be attributed to Lyme and associated diseases each year.

URI-led program first in nation to provide treatment from pharmacists that could prevent Lyme disease, URI, July 19, 2017KINGSTON, R.I., July 19, 2017 — In the first program of its kind in the nation, local pharmacies are offering eligible consumers on-site antibiotic treatment to reduce the chance of developing Lyme disease. Prompt treatment with the antibiotic doxycycline is crucial to successful treatment of the tick-borne illness, and making it readily available without a doctor’s visit could help reduce the incidence of Lyme disease, Jacobson said. In fact, a 2001 study published in the New England Journal of Medicine reported that such prophylactic treatment can reduce the risk of developing Lyme Disease by 87 percent.

A Rare Viral Disease Is on the Rise, TuftsNow, July 16, 2017On paper, Powassan virus sounds like your basic nightmare. A tick-borne infection with no vaccine and no cure, it kills 1 in 10 people who get it and causes long-term neurological problems in half of reported cases. Fortunately, Powassan virus disease for decades had affected only about one person a year in the U.S.—most likely because it was typically transmitted from woodchucks to humans by a tick that rarely bites people. So back in 1997, when Sam Telford, a professor of infectious disease and global health at Cummings School, found a genetically distinct strain of Powassan virus in deer ticks—the bloodsuckers notorious for spreading Lyme disease—he initially worried about its implications. But despite the fact that he found the virus in 1 out of every 100 deer ticks he sampled, at the time there were no reports of swelling in the brain (called encephalitis) in sites where Lyme disease was common. He and his fellow researchers surmised that people just didn’t come down with Powassan virus disease from the strain carried by deer ticks. “It turned out we were wrong,” he said recently.

Man critically injured in deer-motorcycle crash near Stockbridge, Lansing State Journal, July 16, 2017
A motorcyclist is in critical condition after colliding with a deer this morning in southeast Ingham County.

As Ticks And Lyme Disease Spread, Prevention Efforts Limited To ‘Shoestring’, WBUR, July 15, 2017A WBUR analysis of state Department of Public Health data finds that Lyme risk remains highest on the Cape and Islands, but all of eastern Massachusetts is now at high risk and the disease has spread westward as well. While local rates fluctuate slightly due to droughts and other factors, over time the overall trend goes in one direction: up. The problem has also become year-round: Fifteen years ago, winter risk was thought to be nearly nil. No longer. And the danger goes beyond Lyme — to Powassan and other diseases that can have far more severe immediate effects.

Becker County motorcyclist injured in collision with deer, KFGO, July 15, 2017A man suffered life threatening injuries after his motorcycle collided with a deer in Becker County Friday afternoon. 

Concerns keep rising that chronic wasting disease could jump from deer to humans, Duluth News Tribune, July 14, 2017Amid renewed concern about whether chronic wasting disease can jump from deer to people, a fatal human brain condition in the same family is showing up more often in Wisconsin and nationally. It’s happening as state testing for the deer disease is down, and hunters routinely opt not to test deer killed in affected zones.

Diseased deer discovered in new spot in Pennsylvania, PennLive, July 13, 2017A free-ranging deer in Clearfield County has been confirmed as having chronic wasting disease, the Pennsylvania Game Commission revealed in announcing a news conference about the incident for noon today at the commission’s Harrisburg headquarters. The diseased buck was killed in an area of the state where CWD was detected previously, but only in deer in two captive deer enclosures.

Biker suffers serious head injury in crash with deer, MLive, July 11, 2017A Reed City motorcyclist was injured when a deer crossed paths with him in Coldwater Township.

Mark Blazis: Deer hunt helps control habitat, The Telegram, July 10, 2017Mass Audubon’s excruciatingly difficult decision was a long time coming, but was absolutely essential for preserving Moose Hill’s — established in 1916 it is the society’s oldest sanctuary — vulnerable plants and animals. Deer devastation of plants had long impacted Moose Hill’s ground-nesting birds including ovenbirds, wood thrush and ruffed grouse, which all need dense understory.

Generally, when a deer population exceeds 20 per square mile, habitat is degraded. Scientifically unmanaged, Moose Hill had more than 100 deer per square mile browsing plant life like Sherman marching through Georgia. Consequently, all sanctuary trees, other than white pine and those within areas of high human visitation, are suffering total regeneration failure. American chestnuts are dying because their sprouts can no longer grow above the reach of deer.

Deer crashes through windshield into passenger seat, Kare11news, July 10, 2017Authorities from the Dakota County Sheriff’s Office posted photos Monday morning of a deer that came crashing through a driver’s windshield, tumbling into the car’s passenger seat.

Can chronic wasting disease jump from deer to humans? Concerns keep rising, Milwaukee Journal-Sentinal, July 10, 2017In 2002, the year CWD was discovered in Wisconsin, six cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob disease were recorded, according to the state Department of Health Services. In two of the last four years, 13 cases have been recorded. That’s a 117% increase.
Nationally, there also has been an increase in cases of Creutzfeldt-Jakob. In 2002, there were 260 cases, compared with 481 in 2015, an 85% increase, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

As rodent populations grow, ticks — and Lyme disease — are coming indoors, BangorDailyNews, July 7, 2017The recent appearance of vermin and pests in Wood’s bedroom coincides with the warming temperatures related to climate change. The past three years have been the planet’s hottest on record, and it is in this changing climate that many pests thrive, negatively affecting human health. Forty to 90 percent of white-footed mice carry Borrelia burgdorferi, the spirochete bacterium that causes Lyme disease, and they provide the first blood meals for blacklegged ticks, also known as deer ticks, which can transmit the disease to humans.

Motorcyclist Injured After Attempting to Avoid Hitting a Deer,
WLKI, Jul 10, 2017A Michigan man was flown by Life Flight to St. Vincent’s Hospital in Toledo late Friday night after he was injured in Hillsdale County when he tried to avoid hitting a deer while driving his motorcycle.

Tasmania’s World Heritage Area damage could be stemmed with recreational deer hunting, inquiry finds, ABCNews, Australia, July 7, 2017Committee chairman and Huon MLC Robert Armstrong said hunting in conservation areas might be contentious but was supported by environmental groups. “Conservation groups certainly want the deer out of World Heritage Areas,” Mr Armstrong said.

Bovine tuberculosis – a disease still worth fighting, UPMatters.com, July 6, 2017After more than two decades of study and testing white-tailed deer for bovine tuberculosis, Michigan has become world-renowned for its research and expertise on managing this serious contagious disease. There are several types of tuberculosis, but bovine tuberculosis (bTB) can infect the widest variety of animals and is what wildlife managers have been trying to eradicate from white-tailed deer in Michigan.

CDC’s tick advice remains the same after Lyme disease discovery, Michigan Radio, July 6, 2017Eisen says earlier studies of B. burgdorferi showed that the risk of Lyme disease increases the longer a tick is attached to a person or animal, which is why daily tick checks are a standard recommendation for preventing Lyme disease. “So what we wanted to do in this new study was to confirm that this new bacterium causing Lyme disease behaved in a similar way,” says Eisen. “And we saw the same thing as we had seen previously for Borrelia burgdorferi. We did not see any transmission by a single infected tick in the first 24 hours of the tick being attached, but then as the days progressed, the risk of transmission increases day by day.” He says CDC’s advice remains the same: carefully check yourself and your kids for ticks every day, and quickly remove any ticks you find.

Researchers Look To Fire To Combat Chronic Wasting Disease, WPR, July 5, 2017Neurological Condition Is Present In More Than Half Of Wisconsin Counties. Researchers have also found that CWD-infected animals also excrete prions through saliva, urine, and feces which can expose non-infected animals to the disease, said Zabel, and they can exist for a long time in various settings. The ease with which the disease can be transmitted and the longevity of prions led Zabel to consider how controlled fires could help to eradicate CWD.

Ann Arbor approves $481K to continue deer management efforts, Ann Arbor News, July 6, 2017The council voted unanimously and without discussion Monday night, July 3, to approve a two-year contract with White Buffalo Inc. for continuation of surgical sterilization and sharpshooting services at a cost of up to $170,000 per year, or $340,000 over two years.

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