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Chronic Wasting Disease Information

KEEP NJ CWD FREE Whole Deer Carcass Ban
  • Hunters are banned from bringing a whole carcass from any member of the Cervid family (including but not limited to white-tailed deer, black-tailed deer, mule deer, elk, red deer, moose, sika deer, caribou and reindeer) into New Jersey from ANY other state or country.
  • Hunters are banned from bringing a non-taxidermied head of any member of the Cervid family harvested into New Jersey from ANY other state or country.
  • ONLY completely boned-out meat (meat with all bones removed), cleaned skullcaps and hides, shed antlers, and clean upper canine teeth of any member of the Cervid family may be brought into New Jersey.
Deer-Derived Scent and Lure Ban
  • Lures and scents made from deer are banned for sale, possession, and use while hunting in New Jersey, including deer urine and deer glandular secretions, as infectious prions that cause CWD can be found in these fluids.
  • ONLY synthetic scents or natural lures made from species not in the deer family are legal for deer hunting in New Jersey.
  • Many synthetic products are readily available at sporting goods stores and online retailers. Hunters must use these products as part of New Jersey’s effort to keep CWD out of the state.

Chronic Wasting Disease Information

CWD Information (pdf, 628kb)
Keep NJ CWD Free: A Guide For Hunters (pdf, 457kb)
Keep NJ CWD Free: A Guide For Butchers and Taxidermists (pdf, 414kb)
CWD Urine-Based Deer Lure Ban
Chronic Wasting Disease FAQs (pdf, 197kb)

Hunters May Not Bring Whole Deer Into New York
Hunters Should Be Aware of Enhanced CWD Protections in Pennsylvania

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a progressive and fatal neurologic disease affecting members of the Cervid family such as deer, elk, moose, and reindeer and is caused by an infectious protein called a prion. CWD results in emaciation, abnormal behavior, loss of bodily functions and death, and is easily spread from deer to deer. It poses a serious threat to New Jersey’s deer herds and eventually wears down and kills every infected animal.

CWD has so far been found in captive and wild deer in 26 states, four Canadian provinces, Norway, Finland, and South Korea, with the closest known occurrence to New Jersey in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Preventing CWD from entering New Jersey is the Division of Fish and Wildlife’s primary focus, and the Division aggressively monitors and tests for CWD in New Jersey’s deer herd.

Annual sampling of New Jersey deer harvested since 1998 have found no evidence of the disease. Based on those samples, if CWD was present in our state we are 99% confident it was in less than 1% of the adult deer at that time (without testing all of the animals in a population it is statistically impossible to say a disease is not there).

Distribution of CWD Map
Distribution of CWD in North America

Video: How to Debone a Deer in the Field (Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership)

Chronic Wasting Disease Videos (Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance, CWD-INFO.ORG)

Chronic Wasting Disease Sampling Information, 1997-2018 (pdf, 330kb) Updated February, 2019
   Chronic Wasting Disease Sampling, 2020-2021 (pdf, 660kb)

Chronic Wasting Disease Response Plan 2013 (pdf, 223kb)

Chronic Wasting Disease Functional Prion Genotype Study, 2006 (pdf, 260kb)

For more information on CWD visit the Chronic Wasting Disease Alliance‘s web site.

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Department of Environmental Protection
P. O. Box 420
Trenton, NJ 08625
609-777-3373
Last Update: August 26th, 2022