DWR: Rare black deer in Moab community died of Chronic Wasting Disease

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Courtesy: Steve Ross/DWR

MOAB, Utah (ABC4 News)- “Coal”, the black-haired deer loved by many in the Moab community’s cause of death has been released.

According to officials with the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources, he died of Chronic Wasting Disease, a relatively rare, but fatal transmissible disease that affects the nervous systems of deer, elk and moose.

Related: Rare black deer known as ‘Coal’ by Moab community to be preserved

The disease has been called the “zombie deer disease.” It can possibly affect humans if someone were to eat infected meat, according to the CDC. So far, there have been no reported cases of CWD infection in people.

July 1, 2019, the DWR has confirmed 16 positive CWD deer statewide. Six of those, including Coal, were in the La Sal Unit. There have been 1,500 deer sampled since July 1, 2019, and 59 test results are still pending.

Head over to the CDC’s website for more information on transmission and prevention of Chronic wasting disease. 

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