Carcass Transport and Disposal

Carcasses or carcass remains of CWD-infected deer can spread the disease. Long after infected carcass remains decompose, the soil around the remains can stay infectious, possibly exposing other deer to the prions that cause CWD.

New for 2020: Hunters who harvest a deer in CWD Management Zone counties must follow carcass transport regulations.

Hunters who harvest a deer from a CWD Management Zone county cannot transport whole carcasses or unprocessed heads out of the county of harvest unless they deliver it to a taxidermist or meat processor within 48 hours of leaving the county. Hunters must also check their deer before leaving the county. The following parts may be transported out of the CWD Management Zone county with no restrictions:

  • Meat that is cut and wrapped or that has been boned out
  • Quarters or other portions of meat with no part of the spinal column or head attached
  • Hides from which all excess tissue has been removed
  • Antlers or antlers attached to skull plates or skulls cleaned of all muscle and brain tissue
  • Upper canine teeth
  • Finished taxidermy products

All hunters are encouraged to handle deer carcasses properly to prevent potential disease spread.

Place in Trash or Landfill: The best way to prevent the spread of CWD is to place carcass remains in trash bags and dispose of them through trash collection or a permitted landfill.

Bury on Site: If you can’t bag and place in trash or a permitted landfill, bury carcass remains at or near where the deer was harvested. Bury deep enough to prevent access by scavengers. Burial will reduce but not eliminate the risks of spreading CWD.

Leave on Site: As a last resort, leave carcass remains onsite. While this will not prevent scavengers from scattering potentially infectious parts, the remains will stay on the general area where the deer was taken. If CWD is already present on that area, it will likely remain there and not be moved to another area.

Do Not Place in Water: It is illegal to dispose of carcasses or remains in streams, ponds, or other bodies of water.

Do Not Burn: Only commercial incinerators reaching over 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit can generate enough heat for long enough to destroy the prions that cause CWD.