For the second year in a row, Crow Wing County is accepting deer carcasses free of charge at the County Landfill on Highway 210 east of Brainerd in order to provide a containment option to minimize the spread of CWD on the rest of the landscape. There has been one confirmed case of CWD in the wild deer population in Crow Wing County.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) is a neurological disease affecting the cervid family – deer, elk, moose, reindeer, and caribou. It causes characteristic spongy degeneration in the brain of an infected animal, which results in their death. It is spread when a cervid comes into contact with prions (defective proteins) from an infected animal. Prions from an infected animal are spread on the landscape through deposits of saliva or other bodily fluids; and, they are known to survive in the soils for multiple years waiting to infect another cervid.

“I am very proud of the decisions Crow Wing County made to lead these efforts. Instead of passing the buck to somebody else the county initiated a process to burn all deer carcasses in our area. What we do with deer carcasses that may be infected is an important first step in containing the spread. If we just toss those carcasses onto the landscape, those prions will lay in wait. We would rather you bring all of your deer carcasses to the landfill so that if there are any prions present, we can properly contain and/or treat them. Deer hunting is very important to people here in Crow Wing County. Not only are people putting food on the table for their families, hunters really help our local businesses” stated Doug Houge Crow Wing County Commissioner.

Crow Wing County is encouraging all hunters to bring their deer carcasses to the Landfill for disposal free of charge. “Please do not throw your carcass into your regular household garbage. Deer carcasses may be incinerated or placed in strategic locations within the Landfill to minimize disposal risk, so it is very important that carcasses are brought in separately from other garbage” stated Ryan Simonson, Environmental Services Supervisor