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Free testing aims to monitor the spread of CWD in Saskatchewan

Hunting, conservation groups call for more action on chronic wasting disease.
Hunters in Saskatchewan are being encouraged to submit heads from deer, elk, caribou and moose for CWD testing. Kneale Quayle / Viewer Supplied

The Saskatchewan government is looking for help from hunters to monitor the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in the province.

Hunters are being encouraged to submit heads from deer, elk, caribou and moose for testing of the fatal, infectious central nervous system disease.

READ MORE: Saskatchewan hunters donate more heads for chronic wasting disease testing

CWD was first discovered in a wild mule deer in 2000, and since then has been found in elk and moose. It has yet to be detected in caribou.

Forty-four of the province’s 83 wildlife management zones have had confirmed CWD cases.

Heads can be taken to a number of designated drop-off locations throughout the province for testing at no cost. Antlers must be removed, the head double-bagged, and tagged with a CWD tracking number.

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More information can be found at the CWD online tracking system.

READ MORE: Gov’t seeks public input on trespassing in rural Saskatchewan

Deer carcasses should also not be transported from the area where it was taken. If a carcass is transported, it should be disposed of by double-bagging it and then taking it to the landfill.

No one should consume meat or other parts of animals that have not been tested or found to be CWD positive.