Big game hunters should note the 2023 chronic wasting disease proclamation for baiting and transportation requirements for deer, elk and moose as a precaution against the spread of chronic wasting disease.
Noteworthy items include:
Whole carcasses of animals harvested in North Dakota can remain in the deer unit, or may now be transported anywhere in the state. However, carcass waste must be disposed of via landfill or waste management provider. This does not apply to heads dropped at CWD collection sites or lymph nodes submitted for CWD surveillance. Taxidermists and game processors can also accept intact carcasses of animals harvested within North Dakota but assume responsibility for disposal.
A new management strategy that allows baiting restrictions to be removed in a unit if the number of adult deer equivalent to at least 10% of the gun licenses allocated in the unit are tested for CWD within a year, and all the results are negative. If the sampling goal is not met or CWD is confirmed in the unit, the baiting restriction will remain.
No new units have been added to the baiting restriction list for 2023-24. Due to the timing of finalizing the proclamation, a one-year pause was placed on adding new units. Units 2K1 and 3B2 are scheduled to be added to the restriction list in 2024 due to a positive CWD detection during the 2022 hunting season within 25 miles in an adjacent unit. They will not be added if the 10% goal is reached this year and all CWD test results are negative.
Hunters are prohibited from transporting into North Dakota the whole carcass or parts, except the lower-risk portions, of deer, elk, moose or other members of the cervid family harvested outside of North Dakota.
State Game and Fish Department officials will conduct surveillance of the state by region on a four-year rotation. This year, the CWD surveillance effort will consist of deer gun units in southeastern North Dakota. Outside of this area, hunters can still have their animal tested by taking it to a Game and Fish district office, any deer head collection site (primarily located in the surveillance area) or using a mail-in self-sampling kit. A unit outside the annual surveillance zone is still eligible to have a baiting restriction removed if the sampling goal is met, or can be added as a restricted unit if a positive is found.