Chronic Wasting Disease

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a transmissible neurological disease that is always fatal to animals in the deer family.  Currently, CWD is found in 25 states and provinces, but thankfully not in Nevada.  To limit the spread of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD), 40 states and 7 Canadian provinces have implemented restrictions on the importation of portions of harvested deer, elk, and moose that can be brought into their states.  During the 2019 legislative session, Nevada also adopted statutory restrictions on importing portions of harvested animals as well. 

The new statute will influence what you can legally bring back into our state. Because you have drawn a tag to hunt elk, deer, or moose in a neighboring state, we wanted to be sure that you were aware of this new statute.  You may still bring in the meat, skull cap, antlers, and cape, but you need to pay close attention to how this can be done.

It is now unlawful for you, your agent, or employee to knowingly bring into Nevada or possess the carcass or any part of the carcass of any elk, mule deer, white-tailed deer, moose, reindeer, caribou, or fallow deer which were obtained in another state, territory or country, EXCEPT

It is lawful for you, your agent, or employee to bring into Nevada the following parts of the carcass of any of the animals listed above

Wrapped meat or quarters, with no part of the spinal column, brain tissue, or head attached. 

The hide or cape with no part of the spinal column, brain tissue, or head attached.

The clean skull plate with antlers attached and no brain tissue attached.

The antlers with no meat or tissue other than antler velvet attached.

The taxidermy mount with no meat or tissue other than antler velvet attached.

The upper canine teeth including, without limitation, the bugler, whistler, and ivory teeth.

Please help us to keep Nevada CWD free by following these regulations.



What Is CWD?

CWD is a transmissible spongiform encephalopathy (TSE) that is found in deer and elk. It is believed to be caused by a mutated protein, called a prion that attaches to, and transforms healthy brain proteins into disfigured mutations that lead to a deterioration of the brain, and ultimately death of the animal.

CWD is similar but different from scrapie (a disease found in domestic sheep), Bovine Sponfigorm Encephalitis (also referred to as "mad cow" disease) and Creutzfeld-Jakob disease (a TSE found in humans.) While similar to these diseases, there is no known causal link between CWD and other TSEs of animals or people. There is currently no evidence to indicate that CWD can be transmitted from elk and deer to livestock or humans.

Signs of an Infected Game Animal

Clinical signs of CWD include stumbling, poor body condition, excessive drinking and salivation and difficulty running. If you observe such signs, please report the sighting to your nearest NDOW office. Learn how you can help.

Sampling Efforts and Check Stations

CWD has not been detected in Nevada, yet sampling efforts in the state are ongoing. As of August 2009, the closest state to detect CWD in wild deer herds is Utah.
During the period August 2008 - August 2009, a total of 210 CWD samples from both mule deer and elk were collected in Nevada and submitted for testing. 205 samples tested negative for CWD. 5 samples were of unsuitable quality to test.

Nevada began routine testing for CWD in 1998.  Samples are collected from a variety of methods, including contacts in field between NDOW biologists and hunters, check stations, road kills, and inspection at meat processing facilities. The majority of the samples came from hunter-harvested animals.

Biologists are keeping a close eye on population numbers and will continue to analyze samples by deer and elk game management units. NDOW will be collecting both CWD samples from these animals as well as other biological data that will help us to better understand body condition of mule deer and potential limiting factors for the population. 

How You Can Help

Your observations of animals showing possible signs of CWD are extremely valuable to NDOW biologists in the effort to monitor CWD status in Nevada. Clinical signs of CWD include stumbling, poor body condition, excessive drinking and salivation and difficulty running. If you observe such signs, please report the sighting to your nearest NDOW office or to the Operation Game Thief number listed below.

Hunters who would like to donate a sample from their deer or elk for Nevada’s CWD sampling effort may do so by bringing the head of the animal to one of the locations listed below during normal business hours. Hunters who are having taxidermy work done on trophy animals may not want to donate a sample since the process may damage the cape.

Carcass Disposal:

As a preventative measure in Nevada, if the deer or elk carcass is brought out of the field, the best practice to dispose of the carcass is to bury the head and spinal cord, or dispose of it an approved landfill closest to your location. Please see list of approved landfills. If you harvest an animal in another state, please follow that state's CWD disposal guidelines.

Operation Game Thief

Nevada Department of Wildlife - Eastern Region
60 Youth Center Road
Elko, Nevada 89801
Phone (775) 777-2300

Nevada Department of Agriculture
4780 E. Idaho St.
Elko, Nevada 89801
Phone (775) 738-8076

Nevada Department of Wildlife - Ely Field Office
1218 North Alpha Road
Ely, Nevada 89301
Phone (775) 289-1655 (Please call first)

Nevada Department of Wildlife 
1100 Valley Road
Reno, Nevada 89512
Phone (775) 688-1500

Nevada Department of Wildlife - Winnemucca Field Office
815 East Fourth Street
Winnemucca, Nevada 89445
Phone (775) 623-6565 (Please call first)

Nevada Department of Wildlife - Panaca Field Office
333 Cathedral Gorge Road
Panaca, Nevada 89042
Phone (775) 728-4233 (Please call first)


CWD Report  

West Nile Virus

West Nile virus (WNV) is a mosquito-borne virus that can cause encephalitis (inflammation of the brain) or meningitis (inflammation of the lining of the brain and spinal cord). WNV is spread to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito. The virus is spread when a mosquito becomes infected by biting a bird that carries the virus. Learn more about WNV.

Trichomoniasis - Wild Dove Disease

Trichomoniasis is a disease that affects mourning doves and other wild birds. It is not transmissible to humans. It is caused by a microorganism that exists naturally. Doves are particularly susceptible to this disease and outbreaks are may be seen in late winter/ spring. When this occurs, birds commonly die at or near feeders or water sources, where the disease can be easily transmitted between doves.

Contaminated feed is suspected to be a significant source of disease transmission. Therefore, fresh feed should be placed in bird feeders frequently, if it is practical. Platforms and other surfaces where feed may collect, including the area under feeders, should be frequently decontaminated with 10 percent solution of household bleach in water, preferably just prior to placing clean feed in the feeder.