VETERINARY SERVICES

CWD Testing

To submit a sample, hunters have several options:
 
  • Check Stations - Animals harvested within the state of Wyoming may be tested in association with Wyoming Game & Fish Department's CWD surveillance at check stations established throughout the state during big game seasons
  • In the field – Your harvested animal may be sampled when in contact with a game warden, wildlife biologist, or other employees who are collecting CWD samples
  • Select meat processors and taxidermists - A Game and Fish employee may be present in certain locations in the days surrounding season opening dates.  Availability varies greatly across the state.
  • Game and Fish regional offices - Your harvested deer, elk, or moose may be sampled at our regional offices.  In most cases, you may need to leave the head at the office until a warden or biologist is available to sample your animal. 
  • Alternatively, hunters may also have their animal tested at the Wyoming State Veterinary Laboratory or Colorado State University Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory for a fee. 

Test your deer, elk, or moose for CWD:
The head with the upper portion of the neck (one or two vertebra) attached is needed; the head should not be frozen or rotten.  The sampling process takes about 5-10 minutes, and you are required to provide the hunt area and a specific location where the animal was harvested.  Consider quartering and freezing your game meat until CWD results are available.  License fees, game processing fees or other incidental expenses will not be refunded.

Wyoming Game and Fish cautions that the testing program is not focused on ensuring meat quality and safety; rather, testing is conducted for wildlife management purposes.  Wyoming Game and Fish follows the Centers for Disease Control recommendations that animals that are obviously ill or test positive for CWD should not be consumed. In addition, we recommend hunters wear rubber or latex gloves when field dressing as a general precaution against all diseases.

If you would like to collect a CWD sample from your deer, elk, or moose, please see the pdf or video below for instructions on removing retropharyngeal lymph nodes.  It is recommended, that you retain the head until it is confirmed that the correct tissues were submitted to the laboratory.  Please remember to provide the hunt area and specific location where the animal was harvested.
 
Retropharyngeal Lymph Node Removal.pdf
 


Test Results:
Hunters who participate in the Wyoming Game and Fish’s CWD surveillance program by providing deer, elk, or moose tissue samples and provide adequate information, can obtain test results at the link below.  In most cases, testing is completed within three weeks.  Hunters, whose animals test positive for CWD, will be notified by mail and those hunters may dispose of the meat without violating any laws concerning the waste of game meat.  Meat should be properly disposed of in an approved municipal landfill.  Hunters whose animals do not test positive will not be notified by mail; negative results will only be available using the link below.


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