Attorney General Ken Paxton today praised a state district court ruling that upholds rules regulating deer breeders, which the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) implemented to curb the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in white-tailed deer. Two deer breeders who challenged the rules were also ordered to pay the state $425,000 in attorneys’ fees.

“TPWD’s lawful rules regulating the movement of breeder deer reduce the probability of CWD being spread from deer-breeding facilities, where it may exist, and increase the chances of detecting and containing CWD if it does exist,” Attorney General Paxton said. “The rules also serve to protect Texas’ 700,000 licensed deer hunters, along with the thousands of people in rural communities across the state whose livelihoods depend on deer hunting.”

CWD is a progressively fatal neurological disorder, similar to mad cow disease, that is transmitted through saliva and blood. If it becomes established in an area, CWD can reduce the population of deer. In June 2015, Texas experienced its first case of CWD in a white-tailed deer at a breeding facility in Medina County. A total of 25 white-tailed deer tested positive for CWD at four deer-breeder facilities at the time the TPWD rules were adopted. 

View the district court order here: