New York, November 20: The carcass of an adult mule deer buck near Yellowstone Lake in the southeastern section of the park tested positive for a ‘zombie deer disease’ that causes animals to act confused and drool excessively. The National Park Service announced the case in a press release and confirmed the presence of the disease in the park.

The animal succumbed to the disease was part of a population study in Cody, Wyoming. It had a GPS collar that helped officials track its death. The collar indicated that the deer passed away in mid-October 2023. The press release said that WGFD staff, with help from Yellowstone, found the dead animal on the Promontory, a piece of land between two parts of Yellowstone Lake. They took some samples and tested them at their lab. The tests showed that the animal had CWD, a brain disease that kills deer. Powassan Virus Claims First Death in US This Year: What Is Powassan Virus Disease? From Symptoms to Transmission and Prevention, Know Everything About the Rare and Deadly Infection.

What is ‘Zombie Deer Disease’

Cervids, animals like deer, elk, caribou, reindeer, and moose, can get a deadly disease called ‘Zombie Deer Disease’ or Chronic wasting disease (CWD). This disease has been found in 31 states in the US so far. The disease happens when a protein (prion) in the animal’s body changes shape and builds up in the brain and other organs. This makes the animal act strangely, lose weight, and die. The disease can spread from one animal to another by touching or through things in the environment that have the prions on them, such as poop, dirt, or plants. The disease can also infect animals that eat food or graze on land that has the prions. What Is Disease X? Here's What We Know About the Alien Disease That May Trigger Next Deadly Pandemic.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say that the deer may not show any signs of the disease for more than a year. The condition makes the deer very thin, weak, and unsteady. There is no way to treat or prevent CWD currently.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Nov 20, 2023 07:29 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website