(WKBN) – The Pennsylvania Game Commission is asking for public input about a plan to use hunters and marksman to help control the diseased deer population in the state.
According to a plan released this week, the commission wants to allow hunters to harvest more deer, and if necessary, deploy Control Units to target and destroy deer that have contracted Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).
Initial counties would include Blair, Bedford Fulton and surrounding areas that could include up to three miles outside of a 10-mile targeted area, which would be determined by where a diseased deer is detected.
CWD has spread throughout North American and into other continents, and is a serious threat to deer and elk in Pennsylvania, officials wrote in an online document detailing the deer control plan.
The disease was first detected in Pennsylvania in 2012 in a captive deer facility in Adams County and in wild deer. In 2018, 123 new positives were detected and CWD has continued to spread, according to the commission.
Wildlife officials are hoping by increasing deer harvests in targeted areas, the disease can be controlled. However, they say an integral part of the plan would call for “aggressive” action that could include targeted elimination.
The public is invited to weigh in on the plan through a form provided on the Pennsylvania Game Commission website. After the form is filled out, it can be emailed to email@example.com or sent through the mail to:
Attention: CWD Comments
2001 Elmerton Avenue
Harrisburg, PA 17110