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Know CWD website

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

Contact information
For information on carcass movement, contact:
Scott Karel
Wildlife Regulations Policy Specialist
Bureau of Wildlife Management

Carcass movement restrictions

The movement of dead or alive CWD positive animals (natural or human-assisted) is a key pathway in the spread of CWD. The infectious nature of the CWD prion contributes to an increased risk of introduction and spread of CWD if dead animals are brought to areas where CWD does not exist if not disposed of properly.

Deer carcass movement in Wisconsin

Carcass movement restrictions are in place to assist in limiting the spread of disease. Both whole wild-deer carcasses and certain parts of carcasses from CWD affected counties [PDF] can be moved within CWD-affected counties or an adjacent county [PDF].

However hunters are allowed to take whole cervid carcasses or any parts of carcasses harvested in the CWD-affected counties or in any state or province where CWD has been found, into any part of Wisconsin, provided the carcass (or nonexempt parts) are taken to a licensed taxidermist or meat processor within 72 hours of registration, or within 72 hours of entering Wisconsin from another state. Licensed meat processors and taxidermists are excluded since they must follow strict rules regarding deer carcass waste disposal, thereby removing the risks associated with improper disposal.

The department does not intend to preclude hunters from moving a deer head outside of CWD affected counties if that head is being transported to an approved CWD sampling cooperator, self-service kiosk, or staffed CWD testing location for the purpose of submitting the head for removal of tissues for CWD testing. After sample tissue has been removed from deer heads submitted via these submission routes the heads will be disposed of properly.

Recommendations for reducing the spread of CWD

The department recommends not transporting whole deer carcasses to areas outside the county or adjacent county where the animal was harvested. Additional recommendations for practices to reduce and prevent the spread of CWD are found in the CWD Transmission Reduction Recommendations document [PDF].


Deer parts that may be moved

  • Meat that is cut and wrapped (either commercially or privately).
  • Quarters or other portions of meat to which no part of the spinal column is attached.
  • Meat that has been deboned.
  • Hides with no heads attached.
  • Finished taxidermy heads.
  • Antlers with no tissue attached.
  • Clean skull plates with no lymphoid or brain tissue attached.
  • Clean skulls with no lymphoid or brain tissue attached.
  • Upper canine teeth (also known as buglers, whistlers or ivories).

If not brought to a licensed taxidermist or meat processor within 72 hours, the only parts from wild cervids legally-harvested in the CWD affected counties that may be transported beyond those counties or an adjacent county are included in the table. These are the same parts that are allowed into WI from other states and provinces that have CWD.

Deer carcass movement into Wisconsin

Chronic wasting disease has been found in wild cervids in the following states and provinces [exit DNR]. Hunters from other states/provinces should be aware of their state's carcass restrictions [PDF exit DNR] of deer harvested in a CWD affected area in Wisconsin before heading home. Whole carcasses and parts of carcasses, other than those listed in the table, from these states and provinces are not allowed into Wisconsin unless taken to a meat processor or taxidermist within 72 hours of entry into Wisconsin.

  • United States: Arkansas, Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, North Dakota, New Mexico, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming
  • Canadian Provinces: Alberta and Saskatchewan
Last revised: Wednesday April 10 2019