PA Game Commission Seeks Input on Proposed CWD Response Plan
The Pennsylvania Game Commission (PGC) announced the availability of its Proposed CWD Response Plan on September 12, 2019 at a press conference in Harrisburg. NDA president and CEO, Nick Pinizzotto, presented at the event. Now the agency is asking sportsmen to review the document and provide input by February 29, 2020. The document can be viewed and downloaded here.
According to a recent press release from the agency, Potential actions within CWD areas include expanded deer seasons, the removal of deer antler-point restrictions and increased allocations of antlerless deer permits. In areas where a new, isolated CWD-positive deer is detected, allowing hunters to take additional antlered deer also is being considered. If disease-management objectives are not reached through hunting, the post-season, small-scale targeted removal of deer could be conducted in parts of CWD areas where determined necessary.
“Hunters are essential to CWD management,” PGC executive director Bryan Burhans said. “Without the effort they put in hunting and harvesting deer and submitting samples from the deer they harvest in CWD areas, our collective fight to slow CWD’s spread and limit the disease where it exists in Pennsylvania would be all the more an uphill battle.”
The National Deer Alliance has worked closely with PGC throughout the development of the proposed plan and will be assisting the agency with outreach to sportsmen. “Nobody wants to have to deal with CWD, but we’re very supportive of asking hunters to do the heavy lifting when it comes to achieving harvest goals,” said Pinizzotto. “Hunters have led the way with wildlife conservation for more than a century, and I have no doubt that we’ll be an effective force in the coming years as we seek to slow the spread of this hideous disease.”