AUSTIN, TX – The Texas Animal Health Commission (TAHC) reminds Texas landowners of statewide exotic chronic wasting disease (CWD) susceptible species requirements for the 2021-22 hunting season.
Exotic susceptible species include North American elk or wapiti, black tailed deer, red deer, reindeer, sika deer, moose and/or any associated subspecies and hybrids. Axis deer are not classified as a susceptible species.
“The TAHC and Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) have worked diligently to develop and adopt rules to protect CWD susceptible species in Texas,” said Dr. Andy Schwartz, TAHC Executive Director. “The new CWD rules that went into effect October 14, 2021 are important steps to enhance surveillance and movement requirements to prevent the spread of CWD.”
Hunters Harvesting Exotic CWD Susceptible Species
In addition to the TAHC’s statewide surveillance and movement requirements for exotic CWD susceptible species, hunters should be aware of Texas’ CWD Containment and Surveillance Zones. All exotic CWD susceptible species, 16 months of age or older, that are hunter harvested in a zone shall be tested for CWD. In addition, no part of a CWD susceptible species carcass may be removed from the property unless additional carcass requirements are met. Furthermore, no carcass may be moved from a zone unless accompanied by a TPWD-issued-check-station receipt, which is required during the operation of the mandatory TPWD check stations. As an alternative to the TPWD check stations, you may contact a TAHC Certified CWD Post Mortem Sample Collector.
Properties where Exotic CWD Susceptible Species are Hunter Harvested
Every calendar year, landowners must have eligible mortalities CWD tested until such time that three animals are tested. An eligible mortality is a death from any cause of an exotic CWD susceptible species that is 16 months of age or older. This includes hunter harvested, herd culling, and natural mortalities on the premises, and animals moved directly to slaughter. The owner of the premises shall ensure that the CWD samples are properly collected and submitted for testing. The owner must also report to the TAHC within 30 days of receiving the test results by writing to Texas Animal Health Commission, CWD Susceptible Species Reporting, P.O. Box 12966, Austin, Texas 78711-2966; by fax to (512) 719-0729; or by email to CWD_reports@tahc.texas.gov.
The owners of high, low, or no fenced properties where exotic CWD susceptible species, at least 16 months of age, are harvested must submit a mortality record to the TAHC each calendar year. Mortality record forms are due to the TAHC on or before April 1 of each year, and shall be retained for one year from the date of submission.
Owners Moving or Transporting Live Exotic CWD Susceptible Species
To move live exotic CWD susceptible species to or from a premises, the owner must obtain a Premises Identification Number (PIN) or Location Identification Number (LID) from the TAHC or United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). All live exotic CWD susceptible species moved or transported within the state must have an official identification device (ID). For more information on PINs, LIDs, and official ID, contact the TAHC Animal Disease Traceability (ADT) Department at 512-719-0733.
An owner of a premises where exotic CWD susceptible species are located within a high fence shall keep herd records that include an annual inventory and mortality records for all exotic CWD susceptible species. The inventory shall be reconciled and submitted to the TAHC on or before April 1 of each year. Annual inventory records shall be retained for one year following submission.
A complete movement record for all live exotic CWD susceptible species moved onto or off of a premises shall be submitted to the TAHC. The person moving the exotic CWD susceptible species must have documentation with the exotic CWD susceptible species being moved. This record shall be submitted within 48 hours of the movement and be directed to the TAHC by writing the Texas Animal Health Commission, CWD Susceptible Species Reporting, P.O. Box 12966, Austin, Texas 78711-2966; by fax to (512)-719-0729; or by email to CWD_reports@tahc.texas.gov.
Dealer Record Keeping Requirements for Exotic CWD Susceptible Species
A dealer shall maintain records for all exotic CWD susceptible species transported within the state or where there is a transfer of ownership, and provide these to a TAHC representative upon request. Records required to be kept under the provisions of this section shall be maintained for not less than five years.
For more information on CWD, CWD zones, and requirements:
· CWD Zones: https://tpwd.texas.gov/regulations/outdoor-annual/hunting/cwd/cwd-zones
· TAHC Exotic CWD Susceptible Species Page: https://www.tahc.texas.gov/animal_health/elk-deer/#cwdexotic
· TPWD CWD Page: https://tpwd.texas.gov/huntwild/wild/diseases/cwd/#navTop
This is an unofficial summary of TAHC Exotic CWD Susceptible Species requirements. Visit Title 4, Part 2 of the Texas Administrative Code for official requirements: https://texreg.sos.state.tx.us/public/readtac$ext.ViewTAC?tac_view=3&ti=4&pt=2.