Can I bring intact deer carcasses from other states into Minnesota?
To prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) into the state, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources officials want hunters who travel to any other states and provinces to hunt deer, elk or other cervid to avoid returning to Minnesota with carcasses that pose a risk of containing CWD.
Chronic wasting disease is a degenerative disease that affects deer and elk. While much is known about CWD, the specific mode of transmission is unknown and the carcass restriction is one of several steps being taken by DNR to minimize the risk of exposure of wild deer.
A conservation officer recently responded to a call of a Minnesota vehicle hauling a whole deer from Wisconsin into Minnesota. The complainant was concerned because of the threat of CWD. Upon investigation, the Officer discovered the suspect was a Minnesota bow hunter who legally shot the deer by archery in Wisconsin, then illegally brought the whole carcass back to Minnesota.
"We ask you return to Minnesota only with cut and wrapped meat, antlers, hides or teeth, and finished taxidermy mounts," stated Chief Conservation Officer Mike Hamm. "If still attached, skull caps should be cleaned free of brain and other tissues." Quarters or other portions of meat with no part of the spinal column or head attached may also be brought into the state.
At this time, no state or province can claim to be free of CWD.
Accordingly, the new law against importing potentially high-risk whole carcasses applies to all deer, elk, moose, caribou or other cervid taken in any state and province outside Minnesota. For entry into Minnesota from other states, pronghorn, bison, bighorn sheep and Rocky Mountain goat carcasses are not affected by the new regulation because they are not cervids.
To report a violation to a conservation officer, contact the nearest Minnesota State Patrol Office or Turn in Poachers at 1-800-652-9093.