Pennsylvania amends CWD rules!

Posted by Bruce Carroll on December 19, 2015 in Uncategorized, State News ; Pennsylvania

On November 2, 2015  Pennsylvania  Game Commission implemented a whole sate ban that prohibited hunters from transporting into Pennsylvania the carcasses of deer, elk and other cervids harvested.  Especially the head and backbone parts.  This was implemented to help protect the PA deer herd from the terrible CWD (Chronic Wasting Disease) is being found and observed in many states.  PA first discovered CWD back in 2012 at a deer farm in Adams County.  Since then Chronic Wasting Disease has been detected in free-ranging deer in Bedford, Blair, Cambria and Fulton counties of Pennsylvania, and in captive deer at a Jefferson County facility.

With the deer seasons all ready in progress and the timing of the announcement of the ban caused a lot of confusion and concerns by sportsmen, taxidermists and meat processors. Many of these concerned individuals voiced their opinions and contacted the PA Game Commission.  After reviewing everything the Commission decided to pull back the ban that prohibited hunters from transporting into Pennsylvania the carcasses of deer, elk and other cervids harvested anywhere in the states of Maryland, New York, Ohio, Virginia and West Virginia.

After the amendment deer carcasses again can be imported from most of Ohio, Maryland, New York, Virginia or West Virginia. The amended rules still prohibit the importation only of cervid carcasses harvested within the areas with in those states where chronic wasting disease (CWD) has been detected.

Now that the order has been amended, there are a total of 22 states and two Canadian provinces from which high-risk cervid parts cannot be imported into Pennsylvania.  The parts ban affects hunters who harvest deer, elk, moose, mule deer and other cervids in: Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland (only from Allegany County), Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, New York (only from Madison and Oneida counties), North Dakota, Ohio (only from Holmes County), Oklahoma, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia (only from Frederick, Shenandoah, Warren and Clarke counties), West Virginia (only from Hampshire, Hardy and Morgan counties), Wisconsin and Wyoming; as well as the Canadian provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Those harvesting cervids in the identified states, counties and provinces must leave behind the carcass parts that have the highest risk for transmitting CWD. Those parts are: the head (including brain, tonsils, eyes and any lymph nodes); spinal cord/backbone; spleen; skull plate with attached antlers, if visible brain or spinal cord tissue is present; cape, if visible brain or spinal cord tissue is present; upper canine teeth, if root structure or other soft tissue is present; any object or article containing visible brain or spinal cord tissue; unfinished taxidermy mounts; and brain-tanned hides.
Hunters who are successful in those states and provinces from which the importation of high-risk parts into Pennsylvania is banned are allowed to import meat from any deer, elk, moose, mule deer or caribou, so long as the backbone is not present.
Successful hunters also are allowed to bring back cleaned skull plates with attached antlers, if no visible brain or spinal cord tissue is present; tanned hide or raw hide with no visible brain or spinal cord tissue present; capes, if no visible brain or spinal cord tissue is present; upper canine teeth, if no root structure or other soft tissue is present; and finished taxidermy mounts.

CWD is a growing concern throughout the country and poses a great threat to the wild deer and and other animals like mule deer, moose and elk.  If you come across a dead or sick animal contact your local Game Service.

Click here to learn more about the Pennsylvania CWD rules and regulations !

 

 

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