Fees Waived in Select GMU’s in Southeast. Raffle Tickets Offered for Remington Rifle.
Colorado Division of Wildlife (DOW) offices in southeast Colorado will be open extended hours during the 2006 deer and elk rifle seasons and will once again offer testing services for chronic wasting disease (CWD). The DOW will waive the testing fee in select game management units (GMU’s) in southeastern Colorado for CWD testing to gather additional data about the fatal neurological disease that affects deer, elk and moose. To encourage hunters in select southeast GMU’s to get CWD tests; the DOW is offering a free ticket for a chance to win a Remington model 700 SPS rifle. This effort is being generously supported by the Colorado Chapter of the Safari Club International and the Colorado Springs Sportsman’s Warehouse. Raffle tickets will be given out at the following DOW offices: Colorado Springs, Pueblo, Salida, and Lamar. Animals must be harvested in the Southeast Region to be elligible to particiapate. In addition to normal weekday hours, the above locations will also be open on Saturdays from now until November 18. Phone numbers will be posted at each office for hunters who wish to drop off heads for testing on Sundays. Deer and elk heads can also be dropped off at field stations in the following communities as long as hunters bring their CWD head tag (attached to the license) and the harvest location information:
- 10/22 (Sunday) in Rye/Colorado City, located at the DOW compound at the end of the Rye Trout Farm Road. (.8 mile east of the town of Rye).
- 10/23 (Monday) at the Chop Shop in Westcliffe
- 10/30 (Monday) in Avondale at 27th Lane and Hwy 50 Business.
- 11/6 (Monday) in Trinidad at the USDA Service Center on east Main Street.
Hunters in the LaVeta area can also drop heads off at the High School during weekdays. The Vo-Ag class is collecting heads for a school project.
Ultimately, the DOW hopes to collect more testing samples from deer and elk in southeastern Colorado to increase knowledge about CWD infection rates and locations. “The more samples we get, the greater confidence we have in our data,” explained Dan Prenzlow, Regional Manager for the Southeast Region. “With the few recent positives last year in the Colorado Springs and Pueblo areas, we’re anxious to collect more data, better determine trends, and monitor what this disease is doing. We are very excited to partner with SCI and Sportsman’s Warehouse in this effort and hope hunters take advantage of this opportunity.” The deadline for inclusion in the raffle for the rifle is November 24. The drawing will be held on December 1 at the Colorado Springs Sportsman’s Warehouse. Hunters need not be present to win, but the winner must submit to and pass a federal firearms background check. Other prizes and gift certificates in addition to the rifle will also be drawn at that same time. CWD testing costs $15 per animal in most units across Colorado. Free CWD testing is available for both deer and elk in the Southeast Region for several units. These include: 48, 49, 56, 57, 58, 59, 69, 84, 85, 86, 110, 118, 123, 134, 128, 129, 140, 481, 511, 512, 561, 581, 591, 691, 851, & 861. Every deer and elk license includes a detachable tag labeled “CWD Head Testing Tag.” The tag includes a bar code that can be scanned to speed up processing. Hunters should bring this tag with the head and be prepared to provide detailed information about when and where the animal was harvested. Hunters should avoid shooting the animal in the head and remove the head from the carcass 2 to 4 inches below the point where the neck joins the skull (below the first vertebrae). The CWD test is conducted on lymph nodes in the throat or on the brain stem when the lymph nodes are unavailable. Testing cannot be conducted on the brain itself. Heads should be kept cool and away from flies and scavengers to protect the tissue necessary for testing and submitted as soon as possible (within five days is best). For a complete list of locations, addresses, hours of operation and to obtain CWD test results, visit the chronic wasting disease page on the DOW Web site. This site also provides the most current information on this disease in Colorado and across the U.S. Non-resident hunters should check with their home state’s wildlife agency to determine if there are special carcass importation restrictions in those states. Many states require hunters to bone out or process all deer and elk meat being returned to their home state from states with CWD. There are similar restrictions in many NE Colorado units and hunters in other units where CWD has been found are encouraged to follow these restrictions. The Colorado State University (CSU) Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratories conduct the testing for DOW. The DOW’s goal is to provide test results to hunters within five to seven working days during off-peak times and within 10 to 14 working days during peak times, early and late seasons. Hunters whose results are not available more than three weeks after submission should call the nearest DOW office for assistance. Test results can also be obtained by calling 1-800-434-0274. This number is available 24 hours a day and hunters can get results for up to three heads per call by keying in the head submission numbers on their CWD testing receipt. Results are also available 24 hours a day through the CWD page on the DOW Web site by clicking on the CWD Test Results option.