Aug. 8, 2019
The Province is implementing a mandatory sampling program that requires hunters to submit the heads from deer harvested in wildlife management units 4-1, 4-2, 4-3, 4-4, 4-5, 4-6 and 4-7 in the Kootenay Region, after Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks discovered five animals with Chronic Wasting Disease 60 km south of the B.C. border.
The Province has been monitoring for the disease since 2002, targeting the Peace and East Kootenay Regions as high-risk areas for disease entry due to its presence in Alberta and Montana. No infected animals have been found in B.C so far, however, more sampling is needed to inform any additional response.
The provincial Wildlife Health Program is calling on all hunters, especially those in the Peace and East Kootenay, to bring deer, moose and elk heads to drop-off locations for testing. Starting September 1, 2019 and ending December 20, 2019, hunters will be required to submit the heads of mule deer and white-tailed deer harvested in specific wildlife management units along the southern BC border in the Kootenay Region.
Anyone encountering an animal exhibiting the symptoms of Chronic Wasting Disease (thin, drooling, poor coordination, stumbling) should report it to the provincial Wildlife Health Program at 250-751-3219 or the Report all Poachers and Polluters hotline at 1-877-952-7277.
For more information on Chronic Wasting Disease in B.C., and for drop-off locations and instructions, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/chronicwastingdisease.ca