Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Regulations in New Mexico

Affected Units

  • Units with CWD Rules: Units 19, 28, and 34 are designated Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) control areas by the New Mexico Department of Game and Fish (NMDGF).

Transportation Restrictions

  • Prohibited Items: It is unlawful to transport any deer or elk, or their parts, outside of these Game Management Units (GMUs) if taken from a CWD control area.
  • Allowed Exceptions:
    • Meat that is cut and wrapped, either privately or commercially.
    • Quarters or other portions of meat with no part of the head or spinal column attached.
    • Boned-out meat.
    • Hides with no heads attached.
    • Clean skull plates with antlers attached, provided the skull plate has been immersed in a bleach solution (one part chlorine bleach to two parts water) with all meat and tissue removed.
    • Antlers with no meat or tissue attached.
    • Upper canine teeth, also known as ivories.
    • Finished heads mounted by a taxidermist.
    • Harvested deer or elk or their parts may be moved to an NMDGF office by prior arrangement.

Compliance and Proof of Sex

  • Head and Spinal Column: You may not remove the entire head and spinal column from the area.
  • Proof of Sex: It is mandatory to keep proof of sex with all game species until the game reaches the place where it will be consumed or placed in cold storage.

CWD Testing and Incentive Authorization

  • Testing Participation: Hunters are encouraged to bring freshly harvested deer or elk heads to any NMDGF office or field collection station for CWD testing.
  • Mandatory Testing Areas: In Units 19, 28, and 34, hunters must present the head for testing within the unit where the animal was harvested.
  • Timeframe for Testing: The unfrozen head must be delivered within 48 hours of killing the animal to be eligible for the incentive program.
  • Incentive Authorization: Participating hunters may be entered into a drawing to receive an elk or oryx incentive authorization. These authorizations can be used by the recipient or any individual of the recipient’s choice (through sale, barter, or gift).

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