U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Roger Wicker, R-Miss., led a bipartisan letter to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and Secretary of the Interior Ryan Zinke, urging the Department of Agriculture and Department of the Interior to conduct an extensive examination of chronic wasting disease.

CWD is a contagious neurological disorder affecting deer, elk and other cervids and already posing a serious threat to deer populations across the country. The frequency of CWD has grown, and the disease has been identified in as many as 25 states and three Canadian provinces.

"We suggest that your two departments assign senior staff to expand the examination of CWD, particularly as an issue for deliberation with the Hunting and Shooting Sports Conservation Council (HSSCC)," the senators wrote.

"The HSSCC is co-chartered by U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Department of the Interior under the Federal Advisory Committee Act. It is an ideal venue to assess current efforts at the Department of the Interior with respect to surveillance mapping and at the Department of Agriculture for developing standards for interstate transport of deer and elk. We believe your agency experts, representatives from states and tribes, and the HSSCC can identify needs for national policy on this matter."