Buck mule deer

A deer that was killed in southern Montana has tested positive for chronic wasting disease.

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The arrival of a fatal wildlife disease in Montana has now been confirmed.

Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks announced Wednesday afternoon that a second test from a mule deer buck killed south of Billings in October tested positive for chronic wasting disease, an always-fatal condition affecting deer, elk and moose. The finding confirms an earlier test that was found to be suspect for the disease.

It marks the first time that chronic wasting disease has been confirmed in the wild in Montana. The deer was killed southeast of Bridger in hunting district 510, which butts up against the Wyoming border.

A second deer taken from the same hunting district has also been found suspect of having chronic wasting disease. A second sample from that deer is undergoing further testing.

FWP is working on a response to the finding, which may include a special hunt to gather more tissue samples to determine the overall prevalence of the disease.

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Michael Wright can be reached at mwright@dailychronicle.com or at 582-2638. Follow him on Twitter @mj_wright1.

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