Hunters in CWD Management Zones Reminded of Mandatory Sampling

Hunters harvesting deer in Mercer and Putnam counties in Missouri are reminded that CWD sampling is mandatory during the opening weekend of the November portion of firearms season on November 12th and 13th. The two counties in the area are among 34 in MDC CWD Management Zones where the sampling is required.

CWD is a deadly, infectious disease in deer and other members of the deer family that eventually kills all animals it infects. It can be spread from direct deer-to-deer contact, through improper disposal of deer carcasses, and through the environment by deer contacting infectious material from other deer.

The Department of Conservation designates where CWD has been found and counties within 10 miles of where the disease has been located as a part of its CWD Management Zone.

Opening weekend of the November portion of firearms deer season is the most popular two hunting days for most deer hunters. Hunters take about a third of the state’s total annual deer harvest during those two days. Focusing on this key weekend gives MDC the best opportunity to collect the most tissue samples during a very concentrated time period.

Hunters must present their deer at a CWD mandatory sampling station within the county of harvest, with a few exceptions. Deer that will end up being delivered to a licensed meat processor within 48 hours or deer heads that will be delivered to a licensed taxidermist within 48 hours may be transported to a sampling station in any county. Hunters may also take deer heads to a CWD mandatory sampling station in another county as long as the head is left at the station after sampling.

You can find CWD mandatory sampling station locations online at, or from MDC’s 2022 Fall Deer & Turkey Hunting Regulations and Information booklet.