Going Public: Chronic Wasting Disease in Missouri's Deer, and Mandatory CWD Sampling Weekend
On this episode of 'Going Public', we speak with Missouri Department of Conservation agent, Clarissa Lee, about Chronic Wasting Disease in deer and Mandatory CWD Sampling Weekend, which is Nov. 12th and 13th.
The disease is deadly among the deer population, and there is no cure. The sampling program aims to monitor and reduce the spread in Missouri and the region.
If you harvest a deer from select counties in the CWD Management Zone during Nov. 12th-13th, 2022, you must take your deer — or just the head —on the day of harvest to one of the CWD sampling stations, designated by the Missouri Dept. of Conservation.
Hunters are reminded to follow carcass transportation regulations when traveling to CWD sampling stations.
Sampling stations are open from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The counties for mandatory sampling are: Adair, Barry, Barton,
Camden, Cedar, Chariton, Christian, Clark, Crawford, Franklin, Greene, Hickory, Howell, Jefferson, Laclede, Linn, Macon, McDonald, Mercer, Oregon, Ozark, Perry, Polk, Pulaski, Putnam, Ripley, St. Clair, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Stone, Sullivan, Taney, Vernon, and Washington.
Can CWD Infect People?
According the Missouri Dept. of Conservation website, to date, there have been no reported cases of CWD infection in people.
However, some studies raise concerns that there may be a potential risk to people. Research is ongoing. Hunters and others should take precautions when processing any game to help prevent the transmission of any potential disease.
To be as safe as possible and decrease potential risk of exposure to CWD, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that hunters in areas where CWD is found, take the following precautions:
- Strongly consider having their harvested deer tested before eating the meat.
- If your animal tests positive for CWD, do not eat meat from that animal.
- Do not shoot, handle or eat meat from deer and elk that look sick or are acting strangely or are found dead.
When field-dressing a deer:
- Wear latex or rubber gloves when dressing the animal or handling the meat.
- Minimize how much you handle the organs of the animal, particularly the brain or spinal cord tissues.
- Do not use household knives or other kitchen utensils for field dressing.
If you have your deer or elk commercially processed, the Missouri Department of Conservation also recommends that you consider asking that your animal be processed individually to avoid mixing meat from multiple animals.
For more information on the topic of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), you may visit the MDC website.