Researchers discovered antibodies in several wild Deer in Michigan earlier this year, indicating that the animals had been exposed to SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19. It was a significant source of concern since many susceptible animals could serve as a reservoir for the virus, allowing it to travel back to people. However, there were many doubts at the time. We didn’t know how the animals were exposed, and we didn’t know if the virus was spreading among wild, so the study only looked at a tiny sample of one state’s population.
A handful of the gaps have been filled in since then. Deer-to transmission has been observed in captivity, which is significant. A preprint of a new publication published on Monday clarified some more doubts, demonstrating that infection is expected in a second state, driven by both human and Deer-to- transmission. Overall, the news isn’t particularly encouraging, and we still don’t know what dangers it may pose to humans There are still a lot of questions concerning how SARS-CoV-2 spreads to and how it spreads among them. We know that the virus can spread to, but we don’t know how often it does so or if it does so directly or through an intermediary animal.
To some extent, sampling mirrored the pandemic’s early stages in Iowa, which witnessed an increase in cases in April 2020 before peaking at the end of the year. Throughout the study, 94 Deer were found to be positive. However, that statistic hides some significant changes over time. The virus was not found inuntil after shooting season began, albeit the sampling rate at the time was too low to establish the significance of this finding.