(Wyoming Game and Fish Department)

CASPER, Wyo. — The Wyoming Game and Fish Department said on Monday, September 20 that it is offering hunters the chance to win prizes for submitting lymph node samples of harvested deer and elk.

The department is offering thousands of dollars in hunting gear as prizes in an effort to entice hunters to submit samples in order to help monitor the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) in the state. CWD is a fatal disease impacting deer, elk and moose.

“Elk and deer hunters are on the front-line helping Game and Fish to understand the distribution and prevalence of CWD by collecting and submitting samples for testing,” Deputy Chief of Wildlife Scott Edberg said. “This raffle is one way we can show our appreciation for their efforts.”

There are two tiers of prizes available to hunters who submit a usable lymph node sample, according to Game and Fish.

Hunters will be eligible for “Tier 1” prizes for lymph node samples taken from adult male mule or white-tailed deer or male or female elk at least two years old from animals harvested in targeted CWD monitoring areas.

The targeted hunt areas include:

  • Deer: 1-6, 19, 24, 25, 27-33, 41, 46, 47, 50-53, 61, 66, 74-77, 96, 97, 124, 130, 131, 134, 135, 138-146, 150-156, 163, 165, 169. Deer Hunt Areas 96 and 97 require mandatory lymph nodes submissions for testing.
  • Elk: 13, 15, 21, 41, 45, 67-71, 75, 77-85, 88-91, 97, 98, 102-105, 108, 127, 130

Hunters submitting lymph node samples from animals harvested in all other hunt areas will be eligible for Tier 2 prizes.

Tier 1 prizes include:

  • Special Edition Nosler Model 48 in .28 Nosler, donated by RMEF, with a Leupold VX-5HD 3-15×44 rifle scope, donated by Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation
  • Weatherby Vangard High Country in 6.5 Creedmoor, with a Maven RS.1 2.5-15×44 FFP rifle scope, donated by the Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation, Weatherby and Maven
  • Maven S.1S 25-50×80 spotting scope, donated by Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation and Maven
  • First Lite Catalyst softshell jacket, Obsidian merino wool pants, and Kiln 250 Aerowool hoodie, donated by First Lite

Tier 2 prizes include:

  • ​Weatherby Vanguard Weatherguard rifle in .270 Winchester, donated by Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation & Weatherby
  • Maven B.1 (8×42 or 10×42) binoculars, donated by Wyoming Wild Sheep Foundation and Maven
  • KUIU Valo Camo, Pro 3600 Full Kit Backpack, donated by Muley Fanatics

Game and Fish says that winners will be randomly drawn by March 2022. Hunters who win Tier 1 prizes will be ineligible for Tier 2 raffle drawings.

“Hunters can learn how to take a sample by watching a how-to video on the Game and Fish website and submit it alongside the CWD data sheet,” Game and Fish said. “Hunters can also have animals sampled at any game check station this season or by stopping at the Game and Fish Headquarters or regional offices from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.”
“Results from CWD testing are available online within three weeks. Hunters can expedite results within 10 working days for a $30 fee; contact the Wyoming State Veterinary Lab in Laramie at (307) 766-9925 for more information.”

The department notes that there are carcass transport and disposal rules in Wyoming that aim to prevent the spread of CWD. More information and resources for hunters on CWD is available on the Game and Fish CWD webpage.