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Mississippi Mulls Over Carcass Ban Amidst CWD Concerns

Travis Smola

Mississippi is CWD-free and wants to keep it that way. 

Mississippi is concerned about Arkansas' sudden outbreak of chronic wasting disease or CWD, and is proposing a carcass ban to prevent the disease getting into the state.

The news comes right off the heels of Missouri announcing they are planning to set up monitoring and testing for the disease in areas near the Arkansas border. Mississippi's proposed regulations are intended to stop the spread of the prions that spread the deadly neurological disorder. There are concerns the disease could cause changes to hunting regulations in Arkansas this year.

Mississippi hasn't had a case of CWD yet and officials want to keep it that way. "It will make it illegal to bring in carcasses from CWD-positive areas," Wildlife Bureau Director Chad Dacus told the Clarion-Ledger. "You wouldn't be able to bring in any carcasses that could carry the CWD prion."

The proposed ban would mean Mississippi hunters wouldn't be able to bring in deer, elk, moose or caribou carcasses. Many other states bordering CWD-positive states have taken similar measures in recent years.

In order for hunters to be legal, they'd have to have antlers, skull caps and skulls cleaned free of brain matter before they could be brought in. Meat would have to be boneless.

Many out-of-state hunters having to deal with such regulations have taken to having their animals mounted by a taxidermist in the state they took the animal in. Taxidermy would not apply under the proposed Mississippi ban. Michigan has a similar ban and officials have been taking it quite seriously. Six were cited for illegally importing carcasses in a bust last year.

Wide Open Spaces will keep an eye on this story and will report it if and when Mississippi decides to actually implement a ban or not.


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Mississippi Mulls Over Carcass Ban Amidst CWD Concerns