The PGC announced on its Facebook page this week that due to the large area now covered by Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Disease Management Areas (DMA) that many of the high-risk parts disposal dumpsters have been removed.
“These were dumpsters that we provided to give hunters another option for high-risk part disposal,” said Andrea Korman, Chronic Wasting Disease Biologist for the PGC. “As the DMAs have gotten bigger – and new ones added – it was simply not feasible to maintain the dumpsters at such a large scale anymore.”
According to the PGC, DMAs currently cover more than 20% of Pennsylvania’s land area and have expanded every year since CWD was detected in Pa. in 2012.
Korman also said that the PGC will continue to provide high-risk parts dumpsters within the Established Areas, where prevalence of CWD is the highest.
“Otherwise, hunters can dispose of high-risk parts in household trash destined for a landfill or leave them at the harvest site. They can also take their deer to a cooperating processor or taxidermist where those parts will be disposed of properly,” said Korman.
The PGC will continue to provide head collection bins throughout all the DMAs where hunters can get their deer tested for free. A map of DMAs, head collection bin sites and other information can be found on the PGC website.
Within a DMA, it is unlawful to remove or export any high-risk parts of deer, use or possess cervid urine-based attractants, feed wild deer or rehabilitate wild deer. It is already illegal to feed elk in all parts of the state. Those planning to hunt or take deer within a DMA need to follow the regulations for the upcoming deer season. Deer carcasses cannot be moved outside the DMA with high-risk parts attached. High-risk parts include: the head (including brain, tonsils, eyes and any lymph nodes); spinal cord/backbone; spleen; and any parts with brain or spinal tissue present. The PGC offers free CWD testing within all DMAs. While there is no evidence of CWD being documented in humans, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not recommend consuming the meat of a CWD-positive animal.