Board members want CWD terminology change

File photo (WLUK/Eric Peterson)

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources board members are pressuring the agency to use softer terminology to describe counties affected by chronic wasting disease.

The DNR's website currently notes 47 counties are affected by the disease. That means the county has either had a deer test positive or lies within 10 miles of another county that has had a positive.

Board member Gregory Kazmierski told DNR Wildlife Health Section Chief Tami Ryan during a meeting Wednesday that it sounds as if 47 counties are infected, driving hunters to out-of-state.

Kazmierski said affected counties should be called "watch counties" and the agency should stop counting counties over time and instead report how many currently have CWD.

Ryan agreed to begin reporting annual data but said wording changes may require regulatory revisions.

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