Outdoors: Disease concerns biologists - East Valley Tribune: Sports

Outdoors: Disease concerns biologists

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Posted: Wednesday, October 8, 2003 10:45 am | Updated: 2:22 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

A recent article in Nature magazine says researchers are discovering that chronic wasting disease (CWD) is more infectious than was previously thought.

Although CWD has not been found in Arizona, state wildlife biologists are concerned about the possibility of it coming here. CWD is found in three states bordering Arizona — Colorado, New Mexico and Utah.

Scientists have not pinpointed how CWD is transmitted, but they believe it might spread via urine, saliva or via routes such as shared scratching posts or contaminated grazing land. There is no evidence that humans or animals other than deer and elk can get CWD.

The article quotes wildlife disease experts as saying that decades of culling and containment may be needed in the areas contaminated with CWD. Since its first appearance in Colorado more than 35 years ago, the disease has spread across 12 states.

Arizona wildlife officials have been taking precautionary measures such as banning imports on deer and elk. In 2002, the Arizona Game and Fish Commission implemented an importation ban on live deer and elk to lessen the chance of CWD coming into the state. The commission also placed restrictions on the transport of live cervids within the state.

Arizona Game and Fish Department officials are asking everyone’s assistance in detecting Arizona animals that may become infected with this neurological disease. If you see deer or elk in poor condition, losing hair, stumbling or with drooping ears, or encounter deer that have a slow reaction to your presence, please contact the department at (800) 352-0700 or (602) 942-3000.

AVERY IN TROUBLE

The Ben Avery Shooting Facility in north Phoenix is on a par with Quantico and Camp Perry. Its 1,650 acres of desert with 35 separate ranges are world class, and it is in danger of being eliminated.

The critical meeting is today at 7 p.m. at the Phoenix City Hall (Washington St. and 3rd Ave). If you want the range to survive, you have to vote by attending the meeting.

According to Alan Korwin, author of "The Arizona Gun Owner’s Guide," the planning commission and the city council were shocked, maybe even scared, when so many people showed up at the prior meetings. This is good. It helped. Tonight’s meeting is the one that counts, when they vote.

Korwin is urging gun owners to go to the meeting to show their support for the range. There will be people there — developers, politicians, appointed officials, nearby residents — who hate guns, hate gun owners and hate the range, and are eager to close it down. Don’t let that happen. Be there.

FIRST AID FOR DOGS

The Chandler Rod & Gun Club will be hosting a seminar on first aid and CPR for your dog from 7-9 p.m. today in the Multi-Purpose Room at 125 E. Commonwealth Ave. (southeast of Arizona Ave. and Chandler Blvd.) in Chandler. Dr. Wayne Svoboda, wellknown veterinarian to the Phoenix Police Department’s K-9 Corps, will share procedures to help your dog should it require first aid or CPR. Learn wound care, prevention, CPR and more. The non-member fee is $5. For more information, call (480) 357-8029 or (480) 390-8224, or visit their Web site at www.chandlerrodandgunclub-.com.

FLY-FISHING CLASS

If you have ever wanted to learn how to fly-fish, but never quite got around to it or got the hang of fly-casting, the Gilbert Department of Parks and Recreation has begun registration for its Introduction To Flyfishing class. The class will be held from 9 a.m.-noon on Saturdays, Nov. 1, Nov. 8, Nov. 15 and Nov. 22, in the jury room of the new Gilbert Municipal Court, 55 East Civic Center Drive and at the Pond at Town Hall across the street. The final class will be spent flyfishing a local private lake.

Registration fee is $20, and a $20 materials fee will be due at the first class. The flyfishing instructors are certified by the Arizona Game and Fish Department and will supply all necessary equipment. The class is limited to the first 20 registrants and always fills with a waiting list. For registration details, call Gilbert Parks at (480) 503-6200.

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