Chronic Wasting Disease To Impact Hunting License Applications

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SPRINGDALE (KFSM) -- With more than 50 confirmed cases of Chronic Wasting Disease found in Arkansas so far, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said it expects lower turnout for the 2016 deer hunting season.

“Realistically, we could see a slight downturn in hunting license sales,” said Brad Carner, a spokesman for the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

Carner said the most common concerns came from the public wondering if their processed meat was okay to consume.

He also said most meat should be okay, citing the disease’s inability to transfer to humans.

“They should take extra precaution to not include any spinal cord, or lymph node, in the meat,” Carner said.

While turnout for hunting season is expected to slightly decline, the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission said most can spot a healthy deer.

“If the animal appears to be healthy, even if it is from that infected area, I wouldn’t have any concerns with eating that animal. I wouldn’t necessarily need to test it.”

Hunting season, depending on the weapon of choice, is held from late September until the end of December.