DODGEVILLE – Hunters in the chronic wasting disease (CWD) Herd Reduction Zone are encouraged to take their carcasses or deer heads to collection stations in the CWD Intensive Harvest Zone (IHZ) to help wildlife biologists meet their disease surveillance goals.
“Once registered, and I emphasize registered, adult deer, no fawns, harvested in the CWD Herd Reduction Zone can be taken to one of four sites in the CWD Intensive Harvest Zone where the heads will be removed for sampling and testing,” said Tom Howard, DNR wildlife biologist based at Dodgeville.
Carl Batha, who oversees DNR’s CWD operations in southwest Wisconsin, noted that testing is mainly a disease surveillance tool “so make sure you can provide us with information as to where the deer was harvested, preferably the landowner’s name, address or at least the property’s fire number.”
The sampling site locations are:
Arena – Heck’s Farm Market, 7266 State Highway 14, (608-225-4905)
Barneveld – Eagle Mart Stop-N-Go, 8028 State Highway 151, (608-220-8742)
Black Earth – Norslein’s Wood Works, 4738 State Highway 78, (608-220-7057
Lone Rock – Lower Wisconsin State Riverway, Lone Rock Unit, one mile west of Lone Rock on State Highway 14, (608-220-3474)
Hours of operations at the four stations are:
* Sept. 13-Oct. 13 11:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m. * Oct. 14-Oct. 29 10:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. * Oct. 30-Nov. 9 9:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. * Nov. 10-Jan. 3 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
DNR’s fall CWD survey plans call for stepped-up testing in the HRZ, which includes all or part of 15 counties and 14 deer management units encompassing most of south central Wisconsin. The HRZ surrounds the CWD Disease Eradication Zone and the management goal there is to reduce deer populations low enough to slow the spread of the disease from the core area.
Plans call for collecting samples throughout the HRZ on Nov. 1-2 and Nov. 22-23, but “we want to assure that we reach our sample goal. That’s why beginning today and continuing through the gun season and until further notice, we’re asking hunters to step to the plate and bring their HRZ deer into the Intensive Harvest Zone for testing,” said Mr. Howard.
The sampling is free and this year hunters can expect test results within several weeks.
Only adult deer from the HRZ will be sampled and the wildlife biologist reminds hunters that deer harvested in the HRZ will not be taken by DNR for disposal. Hunters are asked to bring their carcass in as soon as possible to assure a quality sample.
“If you want to have your deer sampled and our IHZ collection stations are not open, process the deer and bring the head to our sampling station later. Keep the head cold, but do not freeze it and bring it to us within five days of harvest,” explained the wildlife biologist.
“Again, make sure you register the deer in the Herd Reduction Zone before bringing it in to the Disease Eradication Zone,” he added.
The archery season in the HRZ began Sept. 13 and runs through Jan. 3, while the gun seasons run from Oct. 30 to Nov. 2 and Nov. 22 to Jan. 3.