Share the Harvest: CWD Testing Requirements


For deer harvested from CWD Management Zone counties

Deer harvested from CWD Management Zone counties may only be donated to Share the Harvest if they are tested for CWD. Donations must go to a meat processor participating in the Share the Harvest CWD Testing Program. Deer harvested outside of the CWD Management Zone do not need to be tested for donation to Share the Harvest and may be taken to any Share the Harvest processor.

For the 2023–24 deer seasons, the CWD Management Zone includes the following counties: Adair, Barry, Barton, Bollinger, Caldwell, Camden, Carroll, Cedar, Chariton, Christian, Clark, Clay, Clinton, Crawford, Dallas, Franklin, Gasconade, Greene, Grundy, Hickory, Howell, Jasper, Jefferson, Knox, Laclede, Linn, Livingston, Macon, Madison, McDonald, Mercer, Montgomery, Oregon, Ozark, Pemiscot, Perry, Polk, Pulaski, Putnam, Ray, Ripley, Schuyler, St. Charles, St. Clair, St. Francois, Ste. Genevieve, Stone, Sullivan, Taney, Vernon, Warren, and Washington.

New counties in the CWD Management Zone: Bollinger, Caldwell, Carroll, Clay, Clinton, Dallas, Grundy, Jasper, Livingston, Madison, Montgomery, Pemiscot, Ray, and Schuyler.

Find processors that participate in STH and conduct CWD testing


CWD is a disease of deer and elk. Although there have been no identified cases of CWD transmission to humans, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the following precautions:

  • Hunters in areas known to have CWD should test their deer for CWD before eating meat from the deer.
  • Deer that test positive for CWD should not be consumed.
  • In general, if a deer looks or acts sick, it should not be consumed.

CWD testing requirements have been put in place for the CWD Management Zone to ensure that deer donated to Share the Harvest are tested in accordance with the CDC’s recommendations.

  • Hunters may present their unsampled deer for donation to participating CWD testing processors; the processor will collect a tissue sample or the head for testing.
  • Or, deer can be sampled prior to donation, but hunters must present the CWD barcode number provided at the sampling location to the Share the Harvest processor.
  • Hunters who harvest a deer from select CWD Management Zone counties on November 12th and 13th must present their deer to an MDC Mandatory Sampling station. You will receive the CWD barcode number to take with you to the Share the Harvest CWD Testing participant at the time of donation.

To collect a CWD sample, processors will need to cut through the neck of your deer. If you want to keep the cape you will need to make special arrangements:

  • Have a taxidermist cape your deer first, then deliver the caped head/deer to the participating CWD testing processor.
  • Take your deer to a taxidermist participating in the Voluntary CWD Sampling Program to have it sampled. Have them give you the CWD Sample barcode number and give it to the Share the Harvest Processor.
  • Call ahead before visiting a processor to ensure you can keep your deer head. Some participating Share the Harvest Testing Processors are collecting deer heads for sampling by MDC and do not sample the deer themselves.
  • Deer with the head removed are not eligible for donation unless a sample was collected, and a sample number is provided to the processor.
    • You can find a CWD testing location nearest to you by visiting our Voluntary CWD Sampling page. They will sample your deer free of charge. Have them give you the CWD Sample barcode number you can give to the Share the Harvest Processor when you donate you deer.