Elk & Deer Health
Chronic Wasting Disease
Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a progressive, fatal, and degenerative neurological disease belonging to the family of diseases known as transmissible spongiform encephalopathies (TSEs).
CWD susceptible species include white-tailed deer, mule deer, black-tailed deer, North American elk or wapiti, red deer, sika deer, moose and any associated subspecies and hybrids. All mule deer, white-tailed deer, and other native species are under the jurisdiction of Texas Parks and Wildlife Department.
CWD in Texas
The first case of CWD in Texas was discovered in 2012 in free-ranging mule deer in an isolated area of far West Texas. Since that time, 49 additional cervid have tested positive for CWD, ranging from breeder deer to free-ranging deer and are either white-tailed deer or mule deer. On December 6, 2016, the first free-ranging exotic CWD susceptible species (Elk) tested positive for CWD in Dallam County.
Exotic CWD Susceptible Species
North American elk or wapiti, sika deer, red deer, moose, and any associated subspecies and hybrids are classified as exotic CWD susceptible species.
On May 30, 2017 new rules were put in place concerning surveillance and movement requirements for exotic CWD susceptible species.
CWD Herd Programs
The TAHC provides a voluntary herd status program for species that are susceptible to CWD. Those that participate in the program must have a herd inventory performed annually by a TAHC, USDA, or accredited veterinarian. For more information about the CWD herd program, call your TAHC region office or 800-550-8242 x777.
The USDA has a voluntary herd certification program also, learn more by reading the USDA CWD Herd Certification Program Factsheet
CWD Management and Regulations for Hunters
New regulations for the 2017-18 hunting season include statewide mandatory testing requirements of exotic CWD susceptible species such as elk, red deer, sika, moose, reindeer, and any associated subspecies and hybrids.
Texas Parks and Wildlife Department (TPWD) has mandatory CWD testing requirements for mule deer, white-tailed deer, red deer, and other CWD susceptible species within the Trans-Pecos, Panhandle, and South-Central Texas CWD Containment and Surveillance Zones
See the CWD Management and Regulations for Hunters PDF for details, regulations, check station information, and carcass movement restrictions.
Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program
The TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program regulations and requirements apply to a person, other than an accredited veterinarian licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Texas, who collects and submits samples for official post-mortem CWD testing in Texas.
If you have questions about this program, need to check your certification status, or if you are interested in signing up for an in person class, please contact us at email@example.com or call Laura Leal at (512) 719-0761.
- List of TAHC Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collectors
- Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program Application and Instructions
- Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Authorized Personnel Program - Online Application
- Certified CWD Postmortem Sample Collector Recertification Module
Bovine tuberculosis (TB) is an infectious disease that can affect many mammals, including members of the cervidae family. The disease is caused by Mycobacterium bovis. It can be transmitted between livestock, humans, and other animals. The disease is spread through respiratory and oral secretions from infected animals.