The Iowa DNR will work with hunters again this shotgun season to collect deer tissue samples to test for chronic disease. So far, one deer hunter from Wayne County has been confirmed to have tested positive for the fatal disease.
Hunters interested in participating in conservation efforts are encouraged to contact their local wildlife biologist to arrange for specimen collection. “If they are interested, but have filled the sample quota, we will assist them in submitting their sample through the hunter submission system, in partnership with Iowa State University – and that comes with a $25 fee,” said Harms.
This is the first year that additional samples will be collected in Greene and Fremont counties after deer in those counties tested positive for the disease last year.
CWD has been found in 12 Iowa counties in 12 Iowa counties. In addition to Greene and Fremont, the disease has been confirmed in Woodbury, Winneshiek, Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Dubuque, Jackson, Decatur, Wayne and Appanoose counties.
If hunting in an area where chronic disease has been detected, hunters are encouraged to take food separately until test results are available. Hunters can check results online on the Iowa CWD dashboard at www.iowadnr.gov/cwdresults.
“Hunters will need a registration number to find the result of the test – either write it down before throwing the tag or keeping the tag,” Nocet said. If a hunter tests positive for a deer, the DNR will contact them to collect the meat and any other parts of the animal for proper disposal.
For hunters in areas where the disease has been found, a carcass disposal plan is necessary.
“Let us recommend the garbage of the servant or land, which accepts the carcasses of the deer, if this is not possible, then the cistern of the grave, and finally leaving the boned deer in the area where it is collected. It is best not to bring the disease to a new part of the state,” Nocet said.
The idea is to minimize the transportation of corpses as much as possible, he said. “Don’t bring him home and pitch him in the ‘back 40.'” Virtual meeting The Iowa DNR will be hosting a virtual public meeting on chronic rabies disease on Nov. 29, from 7-8 p.m., with staff. The state of disease science, the state of Iowa, and current work in management. There will be an opportunity to ask questions and the staff will answer as many as time allows.
There is no cost to attend, but registration is required for information prior to the meeting. Individuals who are interested can participate through the link https://bit.ly/3FIgc4G.