LAKE MILLS – There have been substantial changes to bow deer registration stations in Jefferson County, the Department of Natural Resources announced today.

“We are looking to sample deer for chronic wasting disease (CWD) and much of this stems from the addition of southern Jefferson County to the CWD Herd Reduction Zone (HRZ),” noted DNR wildlife technician Dan Weidert, Lake Mills.

CWD is a fatal disease that affects the nervous system of deer and elk. The disease is caused by an abnormal protein called a prion which concentrate in certain tissues, such as brain, spinal cord, lymph nodes and spleen.

That part of Jefferson County – and deer management unit (DMU) 76A – south of State Highway 18 is in the HRZ. This is a result of the findings last fall of CWD positive deer in Rock and Walworth Counties.

The HRZ extends roughly 40 miles out to a major highway (STH 18) and acts as a buffer between the Rock and Walworth County Disease Eradication Zone (DEZ) and the rest of the state. An HRZ is managed to reduce deer density to 10 deer per square mile of habitat, lessening the chance that CWD will spread and become established outside the DEZ.

The general statewide bow season runs from Sept. 18 through Nov. 18 and Nov. 29 through Jan. 3. This covers DMU 76 A located north of STH 18. The archery season runs from Sept. 18 through Jan. 3 in the HRZ.

HRZ hunters must first shoot an antlerless deer before they can harvest a buck during both the archery and gun seasons.

Below are the archery season registration stations in Jefferson County. Hunters are strongly advised to call ahead before bringing their deer in for registration to verify hours of operations.

Cambridge – Lake Ripley Sport Shop, N4098 Marina Ln., 608-423-4421 Jefferson – River’s Edge Farm Market, 843 S. Whitewater Ave., 920-674-6466 Sullivan – Sullivan Saloon, 165 Main St., 262-593-8912 Watertown – Leonard’s One Stop Shop, 423 S. Church St., 920-262-9662