Elk NetworkCWD Research Gets $100,000 Boost from RMEF

Conservation , News Releases | January 17, 2022

MISSOULA, Mont. — The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, a founding member and sponsor of the Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance, provided $100,000 in grant funding to assist three research projects promoting the scientific understanding of CWD.

“Though some advancements have been made, there are many questions surrounding the causes and spread of chronic wasting disease,” said Blake Henning, RMEF chief conservation officer. “These studies will help biologists and game managers better develop science-based disease management practices to benefit elk and other wildlife.”

Below are brief summaries of projects to begin in 2022.

CWD Prions & Markers of Disease Risk in Fecal Samples (Cornell University)

  • intersectional study to advance early detection methods for CWD and host factors of high CWD risk using non-invasive samples

Mitigating CWD Prevalence in Wind River Mule Deer Population (Wyoming Game and Fish Department, U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service & U.S. Geological Survey)

  • integrate data on CWD prevalence, habitat and deer density to identify hotspots to help develop effective management strategies

Population Level Impacts of CWD on Arkansas White-tailed Deer (Arkansas Game and Fish Commission & University of Georgia)

  • estimate deer abundance, evaluate influences of CWD on demographic and behavior, determine infection rates and develop a model to forecast the effects of management action on future CWD spread

The RMEF grant combines with those of other contributors to total nearly $450,000 specifically for 2022 CWD research.

Chronic wasting disease is an always-fatal nervous system disease found in deer, elk, moose and other cervids. Thus far, scientists confirmed its presence in 29 states and four Canadian provinces.

About the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation:

Founded more than 37 years ago and fueled by hunters, RMEF maintains more than 225,000 members and has conserved more than 8.2 million acres for elk and other wildlife. RMEF also works to open and improve public access, fund and advocate for science-based resource management, and ensure the future of America’s hunting heritage. Discover why “Hunting Is Conservation™” at rmef.org or 800-CALL ELK.