The Department of Natural Resources reminds hunters who are going out of state to hunt that it is illegal to bring back the carcass of a deer or elk from a state or province that has identified chronic wasting disease (CWD) in the herd.
Hunters may bring back only the boned meat, fleshed-out hide, antlers, and cleaned antler cap from deer and elk taken in states or provinces identified as having CWD in free-ranging deer, elk, or moose populations.
An always fatal neurological disorder, CWD is caused by a mutated protein called a prion. There is no known treatment for CWD. Preventing Michigan deer, elk, and moose from being infected with CWD is the only prudent course of action.
Chronic wasting disease outbreaks in other states have been linked to the importation of infected carcasses. The DNR suspects an infected carcass might have caused the exposure to the captive herd that was found to have CWD in Kent County in 2008. This reminder is intended to help hunters prevent the disease from being further spread to Michigan herds.
States and provinces that have CWD include: Colorado, Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York, South Dakota, Utah, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming, Alberta and Saskatchewan.
For more information on CWD, check the 2009 Michigan Hunting and Trapping Guide or visit the DNR Web site, at www.michigan.gov/dnr.