Domestic livestock disease is killing wildlife

Bluetongue is a disease carried by livestock which has been found to be spreading into game populations, killing antelope and white-tail deer. Montana has confirmed two deaths caused by the disease, and flights indicate a significant amount of dead animals:

“Bluetongue can affect wildlife, and we got testing results back on our first two animals Tuesday that show bluetongue was the cause of death,” said Jay Newell, wildlife biologist for Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks at Roundup.

Disease is a significant consequence of intermingling domesticated livestock with wild animals. Consider the Buffalo slaughter in yellowstone ~ brucellosis was originally introduced by livestock, the consequences of the domesticated arrangement in the National Elk Refuge in Wyoming, or the die-offs of bighorn intermingling with domestic sheep.

Note: Western Watersheds Project, Hells Canyon Preservation Council, and the Wilderness Society have re-opened litigation regarding the use of the Salmon River Driveway to trail domestic sheep off of the Payette National Forest, a practice that exposes bighorn to epizootic diseases.