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NDGF wildlife vet tells deer hunters what they can do to help curb chronic wasting disease

The NDGF reported 26 deer tested positive during the 2021 hunting season, an increase from the 18 CWD-positive deer from samples in 2020. The relatively low number of cases is good news to the state, aided by hunters following transport regulations and other mindful practices.

NDGF collection site.jpg
This chronic wasting disease deer head collection site is one of dozens spread across North Dakota.
Contributed / North Dakota Game and Fish Department
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BISMARCK -- As the North Dakota deer hunting gun season approaches, the Game and Fish Department checks in with NDGF wildlife veterinarian Dr. Charlie Bahnson to discuss chronic wasting disease.

The NDGF reported 26 deer tested positive during the 2021 hunting season, an increase from the 18 CWD-positive deer from samples in 2020. The relatively low number of cases is good news to the state, aided by hunters following transport regulations and other mindful practices.

“But we know that once it becomes established, it's really difficult, probably impossible to eradicate,” Bahnson says. “So in North Dakota, CWD is still quite rare. We hope to keep it that way because we know if it becomes common, it will impact our deer hunting in the state.”

Bahnson encourages hunters to submit their deer for testing , either by utilizing a collection site, ordering a sampling kit or having their animal tested at a NDGF district office, all while following the state’s carcass transport regulations.

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People in North Dakota really like to catch walleye, and the opportunities have never been better to do that, Williams says, thanks to the tremendous aggressive stocking effort of fisheries crews.

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