Milwaukee, Wis.– The Department of Natural Resources will continue testing deer for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Sheboygan county this fall. “We didn’t reach our sampling goal last fall,” said Dale Katsma, local wildlife manager, “and we hope to complete our sampling during this fall’s hunting season”.
Last year the Department conducted surveillance in all counties of the state. “This year, CWD testing will continue in the CWD Zones in southwestern Wisconsin, and also in select counties where we fell short of sampling goals,” said Tami Ryan, area wildlife supervisor.
Katsma noted that the success of the Department’s efforts will again depend on the cooperation of area deer hunters. “Local hunters were very cooperative last year,” he said. “This year we want to complete our sampling, and hunter participation will be essential to our success. Hunters may not be concerned about the individual deer they harvest, but each and every deer head is significant for our surveillance purposes.”
Throughout the fall hunting seasons, deer hunters hunters may register and donate heads from adult deer harvested in Sheboygan County at the following locations (during normal business hours):
Miesfeld’s Triangle Market, Inc., 4811 Venture Dr. in Sheboygan Howards Grove Meat Market, 211 S. Wisconsin Dr. in Howards Grove DNR Service Center, 1155 Pilgrim Rd. in Plymouth
In addition, after hunters have their deer registered, they can donate their deer heads at Quality Cut Meats, 125-A Milwaukee Avenue in Cascade.
If deer meet the criteria for testing, the station attendants will assist with the sample collection process. Criteria are: 1) deer must be harvested in Sheboygan or Manitowoc Counties; 2) deer must be brought in for testing within 18 hours of harvest; and 3) adult deer only – fawns will not be accepted. Hunters who harvest bucks will be able to take their antlers with skull plates attached. Deer heads may also be collected after being caped out by taxidermists provided they have been kept cool and are brought in within three days.
“We are hopeful that landowners who allow hunting will pass the word on to those who have permission to hunt their land,” Ryan added. “and it’s important that we get the word out to hunters who have access to these lands.”
“In addition to help from hunters, citizens are asked to contact their local wildlife biologist or conservation warden about any sick-looking deer they may see so that the deer can be tested for CWD. This includes any adult deer that is very skinny and exhibits abnormal behavior such as, little fear of people, inability to walk, disorientation, or other signs of nervous system disease,” said Ryan.
More information on CWD can be found on the Department’s website at: www.dnr.state.wi.us.