CHEYENNE Wyoming Game and Fish Dept – The Wyoming Game and Fish Department has confirmed two new hunt areas where deer and elk have tested positive for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in the Sheridan Region.
CWD was confirmed in Deer Hunt Area 25 in the Bighorn Mountains with a positive test from an adult doe mule deer that died during a Game and Fish capture operation. Deer Hunt Area 25 is surrounded on three sides by four known CWD positive deer hunt areas.
In Elk Hunt Area 123 near Wright, a sick elk was sampled by Game and Fish personnel, testing positive for CWD. Although Elk Hunt Area 123 is newly-positive for elk, the corresponding Deer Hunt Areas, 8 and 21, have been known positive since 2003 and 2019, respectively.
To ensure that hunters are informed, Game and Fish announces when CWD is found in a new hunt area. The Centers for Disease Control recommends hunters do not consume any animal that is obviously ill or tests positive for CWD.
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. A map of CWD endemic areas is available on the Game and Fish website. The disease is fatal to deer, elk and moose.
Throughout the fall, Game and Fish is asking hunters to collect lymph node samples from deer and elk for 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 7-15, 19, 21, 29-34, 61, 74-77, 88, 89, 96, 97, 105, 106, 109, 121-124, 132, 133, 157, 163, 165, 168, 169 and 171.
Elk focus hunt areas include 55, 56, 58-61, 66, 75, 77, 79, 84, 85, 88-91, 97, 98 and 102-105.
In 2019, Game and Fish personnel tested 5,067 CWD samples and continues to evaluate new recommendations for trying to manage the disease.
Please visit the Game and Fish website for more information on chronic wasting disease testing, transmission and regulations on transportation and disposal of carcasses.