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Rick

OutdoorMN News - Midge-borne virus causes death of wild deer in Stearns County  

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Rick

The Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has confirmed the first two cases of epizootic hemorrhagic disease (EHD) in wild white-tailed deer in Minnesota. EHD is a viral disease that is spread by a biting insect called a midge.  

“All of our neighboring states have been dealing with EHD for years,” said Lou Cornicelli, DNR wildlife research manager. “So it was always a question of when it would show up in Minnesota.”

The DNR suspects several deer in the St. Stephen area have recently died from EHD. Tests from two of the deer were positive for EHD; other deer were too decomposed to test. The outbreak is limited to Stearns County. The disease incubates for 5-10 days, and most infected deer die within 36 hours of exhibiting symptoms.

“EHD is both naturally occurring and seasonal,” Cornicelli said. “Given our cold temperatures, we can expect to see a shortened period of infection as frost will kill both the virus and midge that carries it.”

The Minnesota Board of Animal Health confirmed EHD in two captive deer in Houston County on Sept. 5. Those cases appear unrelated to the Stearns County case. The disease first appeared in Minnesota captive deer in October 2018, when BAH confirmed it in six deer on a Goodhue County farm.

Wisconsin, Nebraska, Iowa, Illinois, Michigan and Ohio report EHD mortalities almost every year. In some cases, the disease can dramatically reduce a local deer population in the short-term but has a relatively small impact on the overall deer population. Iowa is experiencing an outbreak this year that has killed several hundred deer in the south-central part of the state.

Finding multiple dead deer near a water source is typical of an EHD die-off. Fever drives the animals to seek water, but they die from internal lesions and hemorrhages.

People who find a dead deer should report it to the nearest DNR area wildlife office. Contact information for each office is listed on the DNR website.

EHD is not a threat to humans or animals outside the deer family. Even so, people should not consume deer that appear to be sick or in poor health.

Additional information about EHD is available on the DNR website.

Discuss below - to view set the hook here.

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  • Your Responses - Share & Have Fun :)

    • smalliehunter
      couple good ones from last couple weeks.  Top pic is my pb 10¾"  Bottom photo is a ten incherfinally got a ruler with white lines that will show up in a photo
    • Djsnej123456
      Just meaning trout  waters that have natural population of trout that are born and grow in the water their entire life.  Green pumpkin, browns, watermelons, black, silver/ blue, some orange. Colors those fish are used too. Insects, Minnows, crawdads etc. 
    • Djsnej123456
      Great pic
    • DLS1988
      I was up last weekend(Memorial Day weekend) at the cabin on Birch Point. Where my electronics reading right that water was 64-66 degrees? Also tried up in the shallows in the pencil reads and sandy rocky bottoms of big bay, the side of the point our cabin is on, hoping to find crappies on beds, but nothing. Seems like the perfect area and water temp for all other lakes I’ve fished and there was nothin. Not a sight of beds or fish. Maybe there just isn’t good crappie numbers there? Anyone will to share some shallows for sight fishing on beds? And info on that water temp or what it currently is. and if that was right, is that still not warm enough for vermillion? Gonna be up the weekend of 6/5 to try again, and hoping to not miss it this week. Thank you
    • Mr. 5 pounder
      Thanks for the input, Patches and good to hear you did well in the area.   Johnson lake is a memorable one for me. I fished there for the first time about two years ago around the last week of June and as soon as we drove past Frontier my pin clip for the boat trailer fell off. Never found out why and never happened again, but I noticed it gone at the launch. I was with a buddy of mine and my father, and I told them to just troll near the launch while I went back to look for the clip. After about 15 more minutes I found it in the middle of road, right outside Pine Cone Cafe.   By the way, it was overcast with the occasional sprinkle, but the sun would spill out as well. When i got back to the launch I noticed my two fisherman pals where not eager to come pick me up. In about 20 minutes they caught 3 walleye trolling spinners in about the 10-12 foot weed line outside of the launch.  We kept one feeling we were deserving giving the circumstance, but as soon as I got in the boat luck failed us again. We trolled the whole lake and only caught one more on the east side. The weather kept getting better which was probably the reason, but it seems like Johnson is like most likes in the area... where if there is a hot walleye bite its not going to last too long.    My Dad went out on Burrows the other day and got nothing too exciting besides northern while fishing the same tactic.  Thats one of our "go tos," but Im currenty not in the area, but getting there soon. Hopefully i bring better reports come as well.   Good Luck    
    • CigarGuy
      There's one on Craigslist in the free section. It's in rough shape, but the floats look good. Brooklyn Park.
    • gunner55
    • chucker1101
      Smallmouth should be on beds spawning. Good time to fish smallmouth. Fishing off shallow water off rocky islands on East side of Vermilion should be in play. Troll and throw spinners to shore.  Look for line where big rocks end and small rocks/gravel starts. 
    • MN BassFisher
      We tried pretty hard for them over Memorial Weekend and overall it was slow for us. Never really figured anything out. Beat the banks and some main lake points. Seemed to get fish off the bank just a bit, 6-8fow. We did get some on Topwaters shallow that appeared to push up shallow for the day when the water warmed up 6 degrees. 
    • DonkeyHodey
      Don’t ya love when the weather forecasters are wrong?  S’pose to rain all weekend, but we were blessed with overcast/partly sunny weather.   Over the weekend, we fished around on 3 little lakes (all <200 acres) in Bemidji area (Clearwater county).  One lake was already up to 66 degrees in the middle!  Most vegetation is still low except a few lily pads were just hitting the surface at the shallows; bulrushes are still dried/brown.  With the warmer weather this week, I’ll bet the lakes will start filling out with vegetation in a matter of days and probably be growing fast.   Sunny/crappie bite was nice on Sat; dead on Sunday—had to work to find them though.  (Morning bites were poor--Afternoons much better.  Evening is always good…) (males were staging; females weren’t around yet)  Their location varied between hugging emergent bulrushes to being suspended at ~8 feet in ~15 feet of water.  (the suspended ones weren’t biting, though)  We were using slip bobbers with 1/32 flu flus and nightcrawlers. Found some nice perch hugging the bottom in 7-10 FOW jigging with 1/16 pink/white beetle-bou jigs.   Once sonny boy starting catching northerns casting a shad rap, then princess wanted to catch a nort too; so our fishing trip shifted from casting bobbers to trolling with spoons and the norts were very cooperative—getting 1-2 strikes every time down a simple shoreline of ~100 yds.  Norties were fat and healthy! Princess caught her PB northern!   Hoping to be back fishing around in Stearns and Morrison county (central MN) this weekend and got another getaway planned for next week.  Happy Fishing!
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