Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD) Found in White-Tailed Deer in Ontario

Posted on Tuesday October 10, 2017

Attention hunters and residents of Ontario: Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease (EHD) has been confirmed in white-tailed deer for the first time ever in Ontario.

What is EHD?

EHD is an infectious and often fatal virus in white-tailed deer. Infected deer typically lose their appetite, lose their fear of people, grow weak, show excessive salivation, develop a rapid pulse and respiration rate, and show signs of fever, including submersing themselves in bodies of water to reduce their body temperature. Infected deer are often found dead in or near water bodies.

How do deer become infected?

The disease is spread through bites of midges of the genus Culicoides, commonly referred to as “no-see-ums”.

Is there a risk to you?

The EHD virus is not a public health threat – it is not known to cause human illness. Eating meat from EHD-infected deer free from signs of sickness, ulcers, abscess, or other abnormalities is considered safe. Hunters should, as always, practice proper carcass handling and processing techniques when dressing hunted deer.

What can you do to help?

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry is asking for the public’s help in reporting cases of sick or dead deer. Reports can be made by calling the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative at 1-866-673-4781, or by calling the Natural Resources Information Centre at 1-800-667-1940.

Find out more information about EHD: http://blog.healthywildlife.ca/fatal-deer-disease-reaches-ontario-first-time/