Fear that chronic wasting disease is spreading through Alberta and could become an epidemic that would cripple part of Canada’s agriculture industry — much as mad cow disease did to Alberta’s cattle industry in 2003 — have prompted calls for the federal government and Alberta’s government to take action.

The fatal nervous-system disease, which is known to affect elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, black-tailed deer and moose, could possibly be spread from these animals to domesticated cattle through the contamination of water and feed by infected saliva or feces.

But what is the disease, how is it transmitted and does the federal government have a plan to prevent it from spreading? David Rowledge, a director with the Alliance for Public Wildlife, answers these questions and more in this video, shot during the Ontario Federation of Anglers and Hunters annual general meeting in March 2013.