Shirkey reminds residents of new hunting guidelines

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LANSING, Mich. — Sen. Mike Shirkey on Thursday reminded Branch, Hillsdale and Jackson county residents of new cervid importation regulations that will help protect the state’s deer population and safeguard our hunting tradition.

“Hundreds of thousands of people, including our family, will head out deer hunting in Michigan and in neighboring states over the next several weeks,” said Shirkey, R-Clarklake. “Any of us bringing deer in from out of state should keep in mind these guidelines for a successful hunt that will help protect us as well as the deer in our state.”

To help keep potential cases of chronic wasting disease (CWD) from unintentionally being brought into Michigan, hunters who harvest a cervid (deer, moose or elk) in any other state or province can only import certain parts, such as hides, deboned meat, quarters, finished taxidermy products, cleaned teeth and antlers.

“If someone harvests a deer out of state, the best solution, if you want to bring it into Michigan for processing, is to skin and quarter it before taking it to your favorite processor,” Shirkey said.

CWD is a fatal, contagious neurological disease. In 2015, a free-ranging deer in mid-Michigan tested positive for CWD.

Since that discovery, nine animals have tested positive for the disease. The state has taken constructive steps to help contain this threat, with success so far. Those hunting in Michigan within areas where CWD has been found must follow specific regulations as well.

The regular firearm deer hunting season runs from Nov. 15-30. For more information on chronic wasting disease, visit www.michigan.gov/cwd.