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Explore chronic wasting disease

Washburn positiveCWD in NW Wisconsin
information, results and sampling locations.

Know CWD website

Know CWD [exit DNR] General information about CWD in Wisconsin including common misconceptions.

Related sites
Contact information
For information on CWD, contact:
Timothy Marien
CWD wildlife biologist
Bureau of Wildlife Management

Chronic wasting disease

The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources began monitoring the state's wild white tailed deer for chronic wasting disease (CWD) in 1999. The first positives were found in 2002 through testing of hunter harvested deer in November 2001.

Note: Oneida, Forest and Vilas counties have been added to the CWD-affected counties effective Jan. 11, 2016.

Oconto and Menominee counties [exit DNR] have been added to the CWD-affected counties October 2016, however the effective date of the baiting and feeding ban for these two counties is undetermined at this time.

CWD affected counties

CWD information

Per Deer Trustee Report implementation, the CWD management zone has transitioned to CWD affected counties. There are currently 43 CWD affected counties. These boundaries match the counties that are prohibited from baiting and feeding with the exception of Oconto and Menominee counties for which the effective date of the baiting and feeding ban is undetermined at this time. From state statute 29.336, Wis. Stats, the department is required to enact a ban on the feeding and baiting of deer in any county that is within 10 miles of any captive or free-roaming deer that tests positive for CWD.

With the recently approved Deer Trustee Report (DTR) rules package, $5 per additional antlerless deer permit sold in CWD-affected counties goes towards CWD testing and monitoring.

The department has developed a chronic wasting disease response plan to be used from 2010 through 2025.

Reducing the spread

There are recommended practices to reduce and prevent the spread of CWD [PDF] that can be done through voluntary implementation by Wisconsin citizens. Through the use of these recommendations the potential influence of human related introductions of CWD may be reduced.

Counties are banned from baiting and feeding if a CWD or bovine tuberculosis (TB) positive captive or wild cervid is confirmed in the county or is within 10 miles of a county where a captive or wild cervid was confirmed positive. Questions and answers about enacting baiting and feeding bans in response to CWD detections.

Carcass movement

There are carcass movement restrictions for moving deer from the CWD affected counties into other counties as well as bringing deer into Wisconsin from other states that have detected CWD.

Deer hunting in Wisconsin

For information about hunting deer in CWD affected areas visit deer hunting in Wisconsin.

Statewide deer hunting season dates.

Deer tags

  • Each deer hunting license (archer, gun and crossbow) will be valid for one buck statewide.
  • One free antlerless tag will be issued with each deer hunting license for use in any Farmland Zone unit only, except these tags will be valid statewide for youth under 18 years of age and Class A and C disabled permit holders.
  • Additional antlerless tags may be purchased if available.
  • Bonus Buck opportunities will not be available statewide during the 2015 season. Any unfilled Bonus Buck sticker earned during the 2014 season or prior cannot be used during the 2015 season.

White-tailed deer farming

As of 2015 there were 421 registered deer farms in Wisconsin. White-tailed deer farming is regulated and licensed by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) [exit DNR]. However the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is responsible for regulating white-tailed deer farm fencing. Before you can register your farm with DATCP you must have your fence inspected and receive a deer farm fence certificate from the DNR.

Last revised: Wednesday October 05 2016