EHD, or epizootic hemorrhagic disease, is one of the deadliest natural disease a whitetail deer may encounter.
EHD is much more common in wet years, such as the one we have had this year. The carriers are midges, mites, and mosquitos which are much more common during these conditions.
Hunters are in a serious panic this year as they begin to find EHD casualties. This disease does not discriminate and bucks are just as susceptible as fawns and does.
Many hunters lose target bucks off their list to this disease before hunting season even begins and not much is more heartbreaking.
EHD causes hemorrhages which create a loss of blood. To replenish, deer will seek out water. Symptoms include loss of appetite, excessive salivation, weakness, and do not fear predators.
The only known cure is a frost; the earlier Mother Nature provides us with one, the better off our herds will be. This disease can easily deplete deer numbers in a matter of days.
It can take years for a herd to recover from an EHD outbreak, but this seems to be a cruel and heartbreaking method of population control.
If you find a deer in the late summer or early fall that has lost this battle with EHD, they will often be near water sources. Although it is unknown if EHD is transmittable to humans, DNRs country-wide suggest not consuming a deer that has died from EHD.