The Iowa DNR will again work with hunters this shotgun season to collect tissue samples from deer to test for chronic wasting diseases. So far this fall, a Wayne County deer harvested by hunters has been confirmed positive for the always-killing disease.

Hunters interested in participating in the monitoring effort are encouraged to contact their local wildlife biologist to arrange for sample collection. “If they’re interested but have run out of samples, we’re partnering with Iowa State University to help them submit their sample through the Hunter submission system for a fee of $25,” said Harms.

This is the first year that additional samples will be collected in Greene and Fremont counties after deer in those counties tested positive for the disease last year.

CWD found in 12 counties of Iowa Chronic Wasting Disease has been found in 12 counties of Iowa. In addition to Greene and Fremont, the disease has been confirmed in Woodbury, Winneshiek, Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Dubuque, Jackson, Decatur, Wayne and Appanoose counties.

When hunting in an area where Chronic Wasting Disease has been identified, hunters are advised to segregate the deer meat pending test results. Hunters can view results online at the Iowa CWD Dashboard at www.iowadnr.gov/cwdresults.

“Hunters will need the registration number to find the test results — either write them down before throwing the tag or keep the tag,” Harms said. If a hunter’s deer tests positive, the DNR will contact them to offer to collect the meat and any other parts of the animal for proper disposal.

Hunters in areas where the disease has been found need a carcass disposal plan.

“We recommend a garbage service or landfill that accepts deer carcasses, if that is not possible, then a digging pit and finally leaving the boned deer on the site where it was killed. It’s the best way to prevent the disease from moving to a new part of the state,” Harms said.

The idea is to minimize the transport of carcasses as much as possible, he said. “Don’t bring it home and put it on the ‘Back 40.'” Virtual Meeting The Iowa DNR is hosting a Virtual Public Meeting on Chronic Wasting Disease on November 29 from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. for an update on the science of the disease, its status in Iowa, and current management efforts. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and staff will answer as many as time allows.

Participation is free, but registration is required for information prior to the meeting. Interested persons can register for participation via the link https://bit.ly/3FIgc4G.

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