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· Still an :censored:
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I don't think the USDA is in ignore mode. Federal agencies are tracking down every part of that cow no matter where it went. As for followimg the trail back to a common point of contamination, that may be impossible. What can be done is to track down and slaughter every cow and their progeny that were ever in herds or on farm and ranches that held the cows and test them all.

Sometime in the 60's, captive mule deer and elk were used in a study near Fort Collins, Colorado and Wheatland, Wyoming. They started dying from something that wasn't identified until 1977 when a researcher noticed that the slides of brain tissue taken from the deer resembled those from sheep with scrapie. Some of the original animals were released back into the wild. Other animals later kept in the same corral developed the same disease.

CWD is called by some experts an epidemic in slow motion. In 1996 CWD showed up on an elk farm in Saskatchewan. It seems to be slowly spreading via the mule deer, elk and whitetail populations. As mentioned in another post, it's already crossed the Mississippi River. While the USDA is conjecturing about feed, I think they should start looking at cross species contamination. The Canadian MCD may have originated in the US in another species.
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