As the voice for public lands, public waters, and wildlife, the Utah BHA Chapter has launched a Fall 2021 program that particularly focuses on the health of our mule deer herds in Utah. Chronic Wasting Disease is a disease that affects the neurological system of the infected ungulate that leads to fatality of the animal. It is spread among deer populations through contact with bodily fluid such as saliva, urine, feces, blood, etc. In the last several years, CWD has become a significant problem in some states and a growing concern in others. BHA has become increasingly engaged in this particular issue as it continues to negatively affect herds in North America. The Utah BHA Chapter aims to support the Utah Department of Wildlife Resources and other conservation groups in preventing this disease from spreading in Utah before it has the opportunity to become a problem.
One of the best ways we as hunters can support efforts by game agencies to combat this disease is by helping data collection initiatives through providing samples from harvested deer, especially deer from targeted sampling areas that have a history of positive cases. The Utah Department of Wildlife Resources recently published a detailed article on how and where to submit samples from harvested deer. The article also mentions which areas are classified as targeted sampling areas – there is no charge to test deer from these areas. A $25 fee will be required to test deer from non-targeted sampling areas.
As a “thank you” for being an active participant in conservation here in Utah, the Utah BHA Chapter will gift a t-shirt to anyone who provides a sample for CWD testing and sends proof of testing to [email protected] (i.e. receipt, note from DWR employee, photo of deer being tested). The BHA t-shirt for this giveaway was designed in collaboration with Vortex Optics and bears the slogan “Keep It Public”. Additionally, for those that want to test a harvested deer from a non-target sampling unit, our chapter will reimburse the first 20 hunters for their $25 testing fee that email the receipt to [email protected]. Hunters do not need to be BHA members in order to participate. T-shirts will be awarded as supplies last.
Thank you for joining in the effort to manage CWD and we wish everyone the best of luck on your hunts this season!