The 2019 fall Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) surveillance program is underway. Hunters are the major source of deer heads used for tracking disease prevalence and distribution.
If you have heads to submit, you can do so at any of the 24-hour freezers available in eastern Alberta from late October to mid-December or submit frozen heads at any Fish and Wildlife office during regular office hours. Check page 13 of the 2019 'Alberta Guide to Hunting Regulations' for office locations and phone numbers:
Submission of deer heads for CWD testing is mandatory in eastern Alberta from Cold Lake south to the United States border. In addition, some Wildlife Management Units are designated mandatory for mule deer only.
For more details, see:
Get the latest news and updates on Chronic Wasting Disease in Alberta. See:
Facts about Chronic Wasting Disease
- CWD is a prion disease that infects members of the deer family.
- It is fatal in all cases; there is no treatment or vaccine.
- In western North America, CWD primarily occurs in wild mule deer, farmed elk and farmed white-tailed deer. In eastern regions, it is found in wild and farmed white-tailed deer and farmed elk.
- There is no evidence that CWD infects livestock or humans. However, health authorities recommend taking precautions.
- Transmission occurs from deer to deer, and in certain situations may involve environmental contamination.
- Once established, CWD is very difficult to control.
- Prevention is the best solution, but early aggressive response is recommended when new incidents of CWD are detected.
A general fact sheet about CWD is available at: