WYOMING —The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has asked hunters this fall to collect lymph node samples from deer and elk for chronic wasting disease (CWD) testing in focused monitoring hunt areas across Wyoming.
Hunters are an important component in helping Game and Fish understand the disease and achieve CWD monitoring goals.
Game and Fish is targeting Deer Hunt Areas 1-6, 19, 24, 25, 27-33, 41, 46, 47, 50-53, 61, 66, 74-77, 124, 130, 131, 134, 135, 138-146, 150-157, 163, 165, 169 and 171.
New this year; Deer Hunt Areas 96 and 97 require mandatory lymph nodes submissions for testing.
Elk focus hunt areas include 13, 15, 21, 41, 45, 67-71, 75, 77-85, 88-91, 97, 98, 102-105, 108, 127 and 130.
“We are asking hunters in these hunt areas to please submit a lymph node sample from their harvested deer or elk for testing,” said Hank Edwards, Wildlife Health Laboratory supervisor. “The samples hunters submit are critical to monitoring CWD within Wyoming’s deer and elk populations.”
Since 1997, the Wyoming Game and Fish has been monitoring the distribution and prevalence of CWD to better understand how this disease may affect the health of Wyoming’s deer and elk populations. Initial surveillance goals focused on the detection of CWD in new areas of the state along with monitoring the disease. This disease has now been identified in most deer hunt areas across Wyoming and necessitates a shift in focus of the program from detection to monitoring.
Continued monitoring of CWD over time is important to help Game and Fish understand the potential impacts of the disease as well as evaluate future management actions for deer and elk.
Hunters also need to be aware of Wyoming carcass transport and disposal rules to prevent the spread of CWD within Wyoming and other states.
More information and resources for hunters on CWD is available on the Game and Fish CWD webpage.