New hunting guidelines to prevent spread of chronic wasting disease in Manitoba deer

Deer walk in a field near Bismarck, N.D. in an April 19, 2012 file photo. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/APBrian Gehring/Bismarck Tribune via AP, File)

The provincial government is updating hunting regulations to help combat chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Manitoba’s deer population.

CWD is an incurable, fatal disease that was first detected in five mule deer in 2021 along the Saskatchewan border.

While Manitoba Natural Resources and Northern Development says CWD is not transmissible to humans, people should not eat meat from infected animals.

To help prevent the spread of CWD, the province is expanding the area from which samples are taken from hunted deer.

All hunters in the mandatory submission zone along the western and southern borders of Manitoba must provide tissue samples from white-tailed deer, mule deer, elk, and moose for CWD testing. Hunters will be informed if their animals test positive.

The province is also establishing a strictly regulated mule deer hunting season in the affected areas and communicating the risks of CWD to relevant Indigenous communities and stakeholders. Anyone who has been hunting in southern or western Manitoba should have their animal tested.