White-tailed deer

In cooperation with local businesses, Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources staff will collect deer heads for CWD surveillance testing during the 2019 deer hunting seasons. CWD sampling options will be available to hunters across northern Wisconsin in 2019.

As part of this regional effort, hunters who harvest an adult deer in Ashland, Bayfield, Iron, Price, Rusk, Taylor and Sawyer counties are strongly encouraged to submit deer heads for testing. CWD testing is free of charge to the hunter, and anyone submitting the head will receive their results in two to three weeks.

The health of the deer herd relies upon commitment from our hunters. Managing CWD begins with knowing where the disease already exists on the landscape, and having this knowledge is only possible with a robust sample size. Please make plans to visit one of the following sampling stations to have your deer tested.

"We're grateful for hunters making that extra effort to have their deer sampled for CWD, and to support them, we continue to make access to sampling simpler, faster and easier each year," said Tami Ryan, DNR Acting Director for the Bureau of Wildlife Management. "Each deer sample is important because it brings us closer to our goal and ultimately contributes to an accurate understanding of the health of Wisconsin's deer herd."

Sampling locations

Hunters have several options available to have their deer sampled for CWD. In addition to a network of 24/7 self-service sampling stations (also called kiosks) around the state, many meat processors and businesses offer in-person sampling assistance. Some sampling locations also have DNR Wildlife Management staff available to take samples and answer hunter questions.

For an interactive map with sampling locations available in your area, visit dnr.wi.gov and search keyword "CWD sampling." There is also a searchable database available as an alternative to the map view.

In Price County, sampling locations include the Northwoods Convenience Station in Hawkins, the Park Falls DNR Center, the Prentice DNR Ranger Station, and Roscoe’s Country Sausage in Phillips. Sampling locations near Price County include Heritage Meats in Butternut and the Springstead Trading Post.

A sample consists of the deer head with three to five inches of neck attached. Hunters will also need to have their harvest authorization number, harvest location and contact information when submitting a sample. To make special arrangements for large bucks, hunters are asked to call their local DNR wildlife biologist. Derek Johnson, the wildlife biologist for Price County, can be reached at 715-762-1340.

Baiting and feeding

White-tailed deer baiting and feeding is currently allowed in Ashland, Bayfield, Iron, Price, Rusk, Taylor, and Sawyer counties. Hunters should check the DNR's baiting and feeding webpage frequently for updates, as new baiting and feeding bans may be enacted in 2019 with new CWD detections. Hunters can also contact local wildlife staff to determine if baiting and feeding bans are in effect in their county.

Prevent the spread of CWD

Recommended practices can reduce and prevent the spread of CWD. Those include proper carcass transportation, handling and disposal; also reporting sick deer, following baiting and feeding regulations and cleaning and decontaminating equipment. Hunters should also follow urine-based scent recommendations.

Sick deer reports

Sick deer and deer with an unknown cause of death should be reported to DNR wildlife staff. This does not include car-killed deer. Contact Pat Beringer at 715-762-1343 or call the DNR's Customer Service hotline at 1-800-847-9367.

Test results

To view CWD results, visit dnr.wi.gov, search keywords "CWD results." Hunters must enter a customer ID or CWD sample barcode number for results. Turnaround time from when the deer is sampled to when the results are available is typically two weeks.

In the event that a deer tests positive for CWD, the Centers for Disease Control, Wisconsin's Department of Health Services, and the World Health Organization recommend not consuming the venison.

For more information regarding CWD in Wisconsin, visit dnr.wi.gov and search keyword "CWD."

(Copyright © 2019 APG Media)

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