Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Guidelines for Hunters

Attention: Hunters Traveling Outside Washington State

When hunting deer, elk, moose, or caribou outside of Washington, be aware of new regulations regarding the import of meat and trophies to prevent the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD).

Permitted Imports

  1. De-boned Meat: Meat must be de-boned in the state or province of harvest and imported as boned-out meat.
  2. Skulls and Antlers: Includes skulls, antlers attached to the skull plate (velvet removed), or upper canine teeth, with all soft tissue removed.
  3. Hides or Capes: Without the heads attached.
  4. Laboratory Tissue: Tissue imported for diagnostic or research purposes.
  5. Finished Taxidermy Mounts: Allowed for import.

Penalties for Violation

  • Gross Misdemeanor: Violating these rules can result in a fine up to $5,000 or one year in jail (RCW 77.15.290).
  • Notification Requirement: If informed that harvested game outside Washington tested positive for CWD, notify the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife within 24 hours. Failure to do so is an infraction (RCW 77.15.160).

CWD Testing in Washington

  • Ongoing Testing: The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife has been testing for CWD since 1995.
  • Current Status: No detection of CWD in Washington to date.
  • Request for Cooperation: Hunters are urged to assist in maintaining healthy deer, elk, moose, and caribou populations.

Additional Resources

Website for More Information

Visit for further details on CWD.

New CWD Surveillance Program and Free Testing for Hunters in Eastern Washington

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Surveillance Initiative


The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) has launched a new Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) surveillance program. This program focuses on deer and elk harvested in eastern Washington, specifically within Region 1.

Free CWD Testing for Harvested Deer and Elk


  • Hunters in Region 1: If you harvest a deer or elk in eastern Washington's Region 1, you are eligible for free testing for CWD.

How to Submit a Sample

Importance of CWD Testing

CWD Risks

  • Disease Impact: Chronic Wasting Disease is a fatal neurological illness that affects deer, elk, and moose. It poses significant risks to wildlife populations and ecosystems.

Hunter Participation

  • Contribution to Wildlife Health: Hunter participation in this surveillance program is crucial. By submitting samples, hunters contribute to the monitoring and management of wildlife health in Washington.
  • Informed Management Decisions: The data gathered from these tests will aid WDFW in making informed decisions about wildlife management and CWD mitigation strategies.

Overall Benefits

  • Public Safety: Ensuring the health of deer and elk populations contributes to public safety and conservation efforts.
  • Ecosystem Health: Monitoring and managing CWD helps maintain the balance and health of the ecosystem in eastern Washington.

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The legal advice provided on Wild Advisor Pro is intended as a summary of the hunting, camping, hiking, and fishing laws and regulations and does not constitute legal language or professional advice. We make every effort to ensure the information is accurate and up to date, but it should not be relied upon as legal authority. For the most current and comprehensive explanation of the laws and regulations, please consult the official government websites or a qualified legal professional. Wild Advisor Pro is not responsible for any misunderstandings or misinterpretations of the information presented and shall not be held liable for any losses, damages, or legal disputes arising from the use of this summary information. Always check with the appropriate governmental authorities for the latest information regarding outdoor regulations and compliance.