By Christine Peterson
Casper Star-Tribune 

Elk and deer herds in danger decades after disease discovery


CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — In a pen surrounded by 8-foot-high fences, at a research station by the side of a winding canyon road in southeast Wyoming, stand seven elk that are going to die.

The creatures don't look sick yet. Their caramel-colored fur still covers round bodies the size of small horses. They run back and forth with each other and two bighorn sheep ewes that share their pen, greedily eating food offered at the gate. How long they'll last is a question researchers can't answer.

Each animal has been exposed naturally to chronic wasting disease, a killer that can lie dormant for years...

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