- Associated Press - Friday, December 4, 2015

HOWELL, Mich. (AP) - A wildlife rehabilitation center in Howell is raising money to build, supply and staff a barn for injured and orphaned fawns.

Officials with the Howell Conference and Nature Center hope to have the barn built by next spring, according to the Livingston Daily Press & Argus. ( http://bit.ly/1YKK2r1 )

The effort is important because of Michigan Department of Natural Resources rules related to stopping the spread of chronic wasting disease, Director Dana DeBenham said. The agency no longer allows live deer to be taken across county lines, so any injured or orphaned fawns would have to be euthanized without a local treatment center.

Chronic wasting disease causes a degeneration of the brains of infected animals resulting in weight loss and abnormal behavior. There’s no evidence that meat of infected animals can spread the disease to humans.

The Howell center took in more than 1,500 animals from May to July last year, a 20 percent increase from the previous year. That trend is expected to continue as the Howell area becomes more developed.

The center is the only wildlife rehabilitation facility of its kind in southeast Michigan. It is licensed by the DNR and U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service.

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Online: http://howellnaturecenter.org/

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Information from: Livingston Daily Press & Argus, http://www.livingstondaily.com

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