ALMOND, Wis. - Neighbors and others interested in a Department of Natural Resources owned property in Almond, formerly known as Buckhorn Flats, are invited to attend an open house to learn about composting research that is starting at the property this summer.

The composting research is being conducted by the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point Soil & Waste Resources Department in collaboration with the DNR. This joint venture, initiated and funded by the department and carried out by UWSP, will further understanding of how chronic wasting disease behaves in the environment and may have implications for viable carcass disposal methods in the future. It is the first research endeavor on the property since it was purchased by the department in 2011.

The DNR purchased the 80-acre property for research and to ensure that the double fence remains intact, preventing wild deer from accessing the property.

The property is located northwest of the Village of Almond in Portage County. The first case of CWD among Wisconsin farm-raised deer was discovered on this property in September 2002 and led to the depopulation of the entire captive deer herd on the farm, which had a CWD prevalence rate approaching 80 percent. Research by UWSP will examine composting as a method to inactivate the CWD prion in deer carcass waste, which may inform long-term solutions to deer carcass waste challenges.

The open house meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, July 9, from 6 to 8 p.m., in the Almond-Bancroft School Auditorium, 1336 Elm St., Almond. Beginning at 6:30 p.m., faculty from UWSP and DNR staff will give presentations on the property’s management history and the composting research project. Remaining time will be open for attendees to ask questions.