FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 09/02/2015
State Representative James White Asks TPWD to Consider CWD Live Tests
Austin, TX - State Representative James White recently sent a letter to the Texas Parks & Wildlife Department (TPWD) asking the agency for its consideration of the use of live tests for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) and to widen the pool of industry representatives to ensure that we have a broad-based buy-in of the State's response to the CWD breakout in Medina County.
CWD is a neurological disease in deer, elk, moose and other members of the deer family. This disease presents numerous challenges for state wildlife agencies across North America. Of concern is the potential for decline within deer, elk, or other susceptible cervid populations. CWD could have indirect impacts on hunting, hunter participation, and the economic benefits derived from big game hunting. In Texas, hunting is a $2.2 billion economic engine that boosts the economies of many rural towns, including many in Southeast Texas.
"I am hearing from constituent deer breeders, visiting their operations and learning about their industry. This is a complex, hi-tech, science-based industry that generates billions in economic benefit for Texas. Therefore, many breeders would like the option of live testing. Due to the costs of live testing, it is possible that breeders could test more deer, thereby, ensuring the health of more deer, without the prospect of taking deep economic losses," said Rep. White.
The primary concern of Texans is that the emergency rules set by TPWD require the euthanizing of hundreds of deer throughout the state causing millions of dollars of losses. In many instances, these deer breeders are hundreds of miles from the index herd and have no record of commercial relationship with the breeder that owned the deer found to have CWD. "The deer breeder industry is integral to the economy of rural Texas and is a reflection of the strong culture of property rights in Texas. This is why I am asking TPWD to consider live testing for CWD," said Rep. White.
For more information contact Rep. White's office at (512) 463-0490 or (409) 283-3700.