Public Hearing Will Discuss Spreading of Deer Disease

By: Brendan Ponton Email
By: Brendan Ponton Email

HARRISONBURG -- On Wednesday night, a public hearing will be held at James Madison Univ. to address the spread of a disease in deer that could find its way to Shenandoah National Park.

It's called Chronic Wasting Disease, and is only spread in deer or the deer family, so humans aren't at risk.

The staff from the park worry its spread could upset the natural ecosystem of the park, and the area. They know the disease in Frederick County, and believe it may come to the park over time.

"Deer are an important component in the system. We want to try to kind of establish some equilibrium. If that disease does start spreading through the park, we would rather not see large scale die offs. That would cause impacts to the system that we really can't predict right now," said Jim Schaberl, the park's division chief of natural and cultural resources.

Tonight's meeting begins at 7 p.m. in the College of Integrated Science Building in room 259. If people are not able to attend, Schaberl said the park would like to hear from them on its website.

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