Bovine tuberculosis in Michigan deer not a concern in Missouri, Kansas, experts say

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Michigan officials are warning hunters about bovine tuberculosis found in deer, but Missouri and Kansas officials want local hunters to know it’s not something they need to worry about.

Bovine tuberculosis was recently confirmed in a large cattle herd in Alcona County, Michigan, making it the 73rd cattle herd in the state to be identified with the bacterial disease since 1998.

Bovine TB attacks the respiratory system of animals, usually cattle and deer, creating bubbles and white spots near the rib cage.

Photo courtesy Michigan DNR of bovine tuberculosis

The disease is a problem in Michigan and Minnesota due to the states’ wetter climates. But both the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Tourism and the Missouri Department of Conservation said it’s not a problem here.

There haven’t been any cases of bovine tuberculosis in recent Kansas or Missouri history, and Missouri officials even said there has never been a case in deer.

So while Michigan hunters should be on the lookout when hunting this fall, Missouri and Kansas hunters should be fine.

Of course, both state agencies say if a Missouri or Kansas hunter sees bubbles or white spots in a deer’s rib cage or lungs, they should report it. But it will likely be a parasite or some other problem — not bovine tuberculosis.