The Responsible Hunting Scent Association was established to bring professional cervid urine producers and hunting scent manufacturers together to work for the common purpose of protecting, maintaining and growing the cervid urine and hunting scent industry; to provide a forum to communicate effectively with other industry trade groups and state and federal agencies and legislators; and to help develop and manage their businesses in a manner that protects wild cervids while providing quality hunting scent products for hunters.
The Responsible Hunting Scent Association manages the Deer Protection Program – RHSA DPP, helping responsible hunting scent suppliers and manufactures maintain the safety and biosecurity of urine-based scent products and their sources.
The manufacturers of urine‐based scent products participating in the Responsible Hunting Scent Association’s (RHSA) Deer Protection Program (RHSA DPP) are fully committed to helping the state wildlife agencies maintain healthy wild deer herds and taking proactive steps to limit the potential of their products contributing to the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). Through this program, participating scent manufacturer members are committed to using urine from facilities that are taking steps above and beyond those required by the APHIS Herd Certification Program to even further reduce the potential of CWD being present in their deer herds. The urine‐based scent manufacturers, facilitated by RHSA, have developed a program that exceeds State and Federal requirements in order to substantially safeguard deer populations in and around these facilities.
Federally Approved CWD Program – All cervid urine collection facilities participating in the RHSA DPP Program requires herd certification and are currently in compliance with the APHIS Herd Certification Program and/or a federally approved state CWD certification program.
DPP goes above and beyond these standards and also requires:
Closed Herds- No importation of live cervids
Continual CWD monitoring
Additional Facility inspections
Physical Herd Inspections
Advancing the Science
Cervid Movement – Facilities participating in the RHSA DPP will be closed to the importation of live cervids to prevent introduction of disease into the herd.
Continual CWD monitoring-animals in program are tracked until death, even if they move out of DPP facilities, and tested for CWD. All facilities participating in the RHSA DPP must maintain current Federal CWD testing protocols and records on all cervids that die or are culled 12 months old or older which designates a “low risk status” with the Federal/State CWD herd certification program standards that indicates no occurrence of confirmed CWD positive animals from the facility.
Urine Collection Facilities in the DPP are inspected annually by an accredited vet who verifies they are in compliance with the requirements of the RHSA DPP.
Reconciliation of herd inventories, shipping records, contracts for sales agreements requiring testing 100% for CWD and final CWD pathology reports for every animal over 12 months of age to verify all animals have been tested for CWD when they die or are harvested.
Verifying compliance with all state and federal requirements to own and operate the facility, fencing certificates, and certification of participation in the Federal Herd Certification Program.
Performance of a fence inspection to ensure no ingress or egress of cervids.
Physical inspection of 20% of the animals checking tag identification, overall headcount and the herd health.
At a minimum of every 3 years a 100% physical whole herd inspection is required to be completed by an accredited veterinarian documenting compliance with annual state herd census records.
RT-QuIC testing was developed as a cutting-edge research technique to push the boundaries of detection for prion diseases like CWD. The basis of the test is fundamentally different than any other test currently used to detect CWD.
· Real-time quaking induced conversion or RT-QuIC (pronounced RT-quick) has been used in laboratories to detect prions in biological samples such as urine, saliva and feces from CWD infected deer.
· RT-QuIC is greater than 10,000 fold more sensitive than IHC and ELISA used by diagnostic labs today.
· Increased sensitivity allows for detection of CWD in samples where detection was not previously possible.
· Because levels of CWD are so minute in urine, the RT-QuIC test not only requires amplification for detection of CWD, but also requires the CWD prions to be concentrated prior to testing.
Davin Henderson received his Ph.D. from the University of Minnesota in Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biophysics. His work focused on understanding the pathogenesis and replication potential of Chronic Wasting Disease prions affecting deer and elk.
Fencing and inspection requirements. A minimum 8 foot fence shall be maintained and inspected annually. If a facility is within 30 miles of a confirmed CWD positive the facility is required to double fence.
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