As a hunter and/or landowner, what can I be doing about CWD?
As a hunter or landowner it is important that you stay informed about the disease. There are numerous resources available to learn more about the disease and what you can do to help.
It ‘s especially critical that hunters and landowners in the CWD Management Zone understand and support the CWD response plan if it is going to be effective in minimizing the impacts of this disease in Wisconsin.
- Stay abreast of new CWD information and research as it becomes available, and familiarize yourself with Wisconsin’s CWD Response Plan
- Allow hunters onto your land to shoot deer
- Take advantage of post-season landowner hunting permits
- Contact the DNR if you observe a deer that is acting abnormally or appears to be sick
- Stay abreast of new CWD information and research as it becomes available, and familiarize yourself with Wisconsin’s CWD Response Plan [pdf]
- Consider harvesting one or two more deer and donating them to a food pantry in order help feed families in need and keep deer populations at the established DMU goals.
- Dispose of bones and other carcass parts at a landfill with an approved dead animal disposal area
- Get your deer tested
- Adhere to rules regarding movement of whole dear carcasses from within the CWD management zone to the rest of the state, and from other states and provinces that have the disease
- Refrain from baiting and feeding deer in order to reduce the unnatural concentration of deer and potential for contamination through saliva or feces.
- When field-dressing game, wear rubber gloves and minimize the use of a bone saw to cut through the brain or spinal cord (backbone)
- Bone out the meat
- Minimize contact with and do not consume brain or spinal cord tissues, eyes, spleen, or lymph nodes
- Always wash hands thoroughly after dressing and processing game meat
The risks of CWD to the deer herd and to recreational hunting warrant the efforts to control the spread of the disease. Hunters and landowners can play a vital role by taking personal responsibility for helping to manage the deer population in the area they most frequently hunt and on the land that they own.