NC restricts deer attractants in CWD areas


Natural attractants now restricted in CWD Surveillance Areas

The N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission voted at its business meeting on Aug. 18 to adopt an emergency amendment to restrict the use of some natural deer attractants/scents in the Primary and Secondary Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) Surveillance Areas.

The Wildlife Commission’s emergency rule builds off the General Assembly’s Session Law 2021-176 that took effect on December 1, 2021 which defines the attractants/scents that may be used while hunting statewide. The session law stipulates that possession or use of substances containing a cervid excretion, including feces, urine, blood, gland oil, or other bodily fluid for the purposes of taking or attempting to take, attract, or scout wildlife are prohibited.

However, the following substances may be used:

  • Synthetic products that are labeled as such.
  • Products containing natural substances collected by a hunter from a cervid legally harvested in North Carolina.
  • Natural deer urine and other substances collected from a facility in North Carolina with a valid Farmed Cervid License from the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (NCDA&CS) and identified/labeled as such.
  • Products labeled as participating in the Responsible Hunting Scent Association’s Deer Protection Program.

The emergency amendment, applicable only to the CWD Surveillance Areas, prohibits possession and use of any excretion collected by a hunter from a harvested deer. This is in addition to regulations already established, restricting the transport of deer carcasses and carcass parts from the CWD Surveillance Areas. The intent of these rules is to help the agency determine the extent of CWD and reduce the risk that CWD prions are moved and distributed within and outside of the Surveillance Areas.

What this means for hunters: Statewide, outside of CWD Surveillance Areas, hunters can continue using deer attractants/scents if they are synthetic, collected from a legally harvested deer within North Carolina, contain excretions from North Carolina facilities with a valid Farmed Cervid License from the NCDA&CS and are labeled as such, or are products labeled as participating in the Responsible Hunting Scent Association’s Deer Protection Program. Hunters hunting within the CWD Surveillance Areas may NOT use or possess urine or other substances collected from deer harvested within North Carolina for hunting.

For more information on Chronic Wasting Disease and related regulations, visit the KNOW CWD webpage.

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