Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife highly concerned about chronic wasting disease

Chronic Wasting Disease
Chronic Wasting Disease sample station in Bonners Ferry
Copyright: KXLY 4 News Now

SPOKANE, Wash. — Eastern Washingtonians who hunt in Idaho or Manitoba are asked not to bring deer, elk and moose back across state lines. 

The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife issued the request in response to confirmed cases of chronic wasting disease in those areas. 

Two mule deer harvested from Lucile, Idaho in October were confirmed to have the deadly neurological disease. 

CWD has been reported across the western United States for more than 40 years, but this is the first time animals in the Gem State have tested positive. 

The disease is a threat to big game animals and will hurt hunting opportunities. 

To reduce the risk of CWD entering Washington state, WDFW is implementing an emergency rule adding Idaho and Manitoba to the list of states and provinces where the disease has been detected. These places will be subject to carcass importation restrictions. 

Hunters who harvest a deer, elk or moose from these areas may only bring the following into Washington

  • Meat that has been de-boned and is imported as boned-out meat
  • Skulls and antlers, antlers attached to the skull plate, or upper canine teeth from which all soft tissue has been removed
  • Hides or capes without heads attached
  • Finished taxidermy mounts

Hunters who may have already brought their harvest into Washington are urged to dispose of any bones or inedible parts that have not undergone taxidermy. They should be double-bagged and placed into your household garbage or taken to a licensed landfill. 

Any hunters who are informed by another state or agency that an animal they harvested tested positive for CWD must notify WDFW within 24 hours by calling 360-902-2515 or emailing wildthing@dfw.wa.gov

RELATED: First cases of chronic wasting disease detected in Idaho 

READ: Deer in 24 states infected with chronic wasting disease