ODNR still monitoring Chronic Wasting Disease


COLUMBUS — Portions of Holmes and Wayne counties will retain their designation as Disease Surveillance Area this year as part of the state’s ongoing Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) surveillance efforts, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (ODNR). This designation requires that additional rules be followed by deer hunters in this area.

Since October 2014, 19 captive white-tailed deer have tested positive for CWD at a shooting preserve and a breeding facility in Holmes County. Since that time, ODNR Division of Wildlife staff have tested hundreds of wild deer with the cooperation of hunters and local landowners. CWD has not been detected in the nearly 1,000 wild deer tested from DSA 2015-01.

The DSA includes the areas within a 6-mile radius from the CWD positive samples in Holmes County and includes: all of Franklin and Clinton townships in Wayne County, and Ripley, Prairie, Salt Creek, Monroe, Hardy, Berlin, Killbuck and Mechanic townships in Holmes. In addition, the northeast portion of Richland Township (defined by the boundary of Township Road 36 to State Route 520 to Township Road 31 to U.S. Route 62) in Holmes County falls within DSA 2015-01. This DSA designation will remain in effect at least through the 2017 deer season. The area will be mapped and posted on the division’s website at wildohio.gov.

The following regulations apply within the DSA:

Requires hunters to bring deer harvested within the DSA to an ODNR Division of Wildlife inspection station for CWD testing during the seven-day gun, two-day gun and muzzleloader seasons. Inspection stations will NOT be operated during the two-day youth season;

Prohibits the placement of or use of salt, mineral supplement, grain, fruit, vegetables or other feed to attract or feed deer within the DSA boundaries;

Prohibits hunting of deer by the aid of salt, mineral supplement, grain, fruit, vegetables or other feed within the DSA boundaries; and

Prohibits the removal of a deer carcass killed by a motor vehicle within the DSA boundaries unless the carcass complies with deer carcass regulations. Additional information on carcass regulations can be found at wildohio.gov.

Normal agricultural activities including feeding of domestic animals as well as hunting deer over food plots, naturally occurring or cultivated plants and agriculture crops are not prohibited.

Hunters harvesting deer within the DSA are required to bring their deer to a carcass inspection station for disease testing. Two locations have been designated as Carcass Inspection Stations for the seven-day gun, two-day gun and muzzleloader seasons. Both locations will be open and staffed from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. The dates for these seasons are: Nov. 28-Dec. 4, Dec. 17-18 and Jan. 7-10.

Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) garage, 1800 South Washington Street, Millersburg, 44654

Industrial Park, 8254 County Road 245, Holmesville, 44633

Hunters, including landowners, will be asked to provide their confirmation number from the game check process as well as the location where the deer was killed (property address or nearest road intersection). Tissue samples and biological data will be collected. The process should take no more than 10 minutes, however, delays are likely at lunch and immediately after dark. Hunters are strongly encouraged to complete the game check process before bringing their deer to the inspection station. However, division staff will be able to assist with checking deer.

Hunters who harvest a deer and wish to have it mounted or caped are required to bring their deer to a carcass inspection station. Samples will not be taken, however, arrangements will be made to collect tissue at a later date.

If hunters have questions about the carcass inspection stations or need directions to the locations, they may call 800-WILDLIFE, the Wildlife District Three office at 330-644-2293 or go to wildohio.gov.

The ODNR Division of Wildlife is responsible for protecting and managing Ohio’s fish and wildlife resources for the benefit of all Ohioans. We greatly appreciate hunters’ cooperation in helping us monitor Ohio’s deer herd. For more information about CWD, visit wildohio.gov.

ODNR ensures a balance between wise use and protection of our natural resources for the benefit of all. Visit the ODNR website at ohiodnr.gov.

Staff report

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