CWD Surveillance Areas and Special Regulations

On March 31, 2022, the NCWRC announced CWD had been detected in a hunter-harvested buck from Yadkin County, becoming the first detection of the disease in North Carolina. Emergency powers were invoked by the Executive Director on April 12, 2022 to activate a localized response plan to assist with detection and isolation of CWD in the affected area. The emergency powers established a Primary Surveillance Area (PSA) and Secondary Surveillance Area (SSA) with special regulations intended to increase CWD surveillance and reduce risk of CWD spread. On June 9, 2022, the Wildlife Commission voted to replace emergency powers with temporary rules that are now in effect.

PSA and SSA Map Full Screen

Primary Surveillance Area map (for download/print)  Secondary Surveillance Area map (for download/print)

Special Regulations

Use of Natural Deer Attractants/Scents: No person shall possess or use any substance or material that contains or is labeled as containing any excretion collected from a cervid, including feces, urine, blood, gland oil, or other bodily fluid for the purposes of taking or attempting to take, attracting, or scouting wildlife in the PSA or SSA. Natural substances collected by a hunter from a cervid legally harvested in North Carolina may NOT be used or possessed in these areas. This prohibition shall not apply to the following substances:

  • Synthetic products that are labeled as such.
  • 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.

15A NCAC 10B .0503 (PDF)


Mandatory Sampling: A sample from all hunter-harvested deer taken within the 2022-23 season dates below must be submitted to the Wildlife Commission for testing.

  • Within the PSA, deer of either sex taken during the blackpowder season (Nov. 5 – Nov. 18) and gun season (Nov. 19 – Jan. 2, 2023)
  • Within the SSA, deer of either sex taken during the blackpowder season (Nov. 5 – Nov. 18) and the first nine days of gun season (Nov. 19 – Nov. 27)

*NOTE: Hunters may voluntarily submit samples for CWD testing from deer harvested at other times and locations during the 2022-2023 season.


Carcass Transport Restrictions: The transportation of a deer carcass or parts of a carcass out of the PSA or out of the SSA is prohibited with the following exceptions, or as otherwise permitted by the Wildlife Commission:

  • Double-bagged carcass or carcass parts transported directly from within the PSA to a Cervid Health Cooperator in Surry or Yadkin County
  • Meat that has been boned out such that no pieces or fragments of bone remain
  • Caped hides with no part of the skull or spinal column attached
  • Antlers, antlers attached to cleaned skull plates, or skulls free from meat or brain tissue
  • Cleaned lower jawbones with teeth or cleaned teeth
  • Finished taxidermy products and tanned hides 

*Note: Refer to the Carcass Disposal Section below for additional carcass transportation exceptions.

Wildlife Feeding: The placement of minerals or salt to purposely congregate wildlife is prohibited in the PSA and SSA.  The placement of bait, food, or food products to purposefully congregate wildlife is prohibited from Jan. 2 – Aug. 31 in the PSA and SSA, except for: 

  • Bird feeders
  • Hunting in urban archery seasons in participating municipalities 
  • Other activities specifically permitted by the Wildlife Commission

*NOTE: Baiting deer will be legal in both Surveillance Areas from Sept. 1, 2022 – Jan. 1, 2023

Carcass Disposal

It is the hunter’s responsibility to dispose of deer carcasses after harvest in a safe and responsible manner. Follow deer carcass transportation rules and never dispose of carcasses in water, on roadsides, in waterways, or on other’s property without permission. Also, never transport carcass parts and then discard on the ground. Instead, responsibly dispose of carcasses by burying on the property where harvested, in a landfill, or leave on the ground at the harvest site. For more information, read Disposal and Transport of Deer Harvested in North Carolina.

  • Lined dumpsters inside the PSA - During the fall of 2022, two lined dumpsters in the Primary Surveillance Area are available for hunters to dispose of deer carcasses. These dumpsters will be located at NCWRC Staffed Check Stations at the Richmond Hill Nature Park and Siloam Recycling Center. Dumpsters can be accessed during the open check station hours at the Richmond Hill Nature Park and Siloam Recycling Center, available on the check station schedule.
  • Alleghany County Landfill - Lawfully harvested white-tailed deer carcasses and carcass parts may be transported out of the Secondary Surveillance Area along Osborne Rd directly to the Alleghany County Landfill facility located at 431 Osborne Rd. Sparta, NC 28675 for disposal. The harvest authorization number recorded on the hunter’s Big Game Harvest Report Card shall serve as the permit for individuals to transport deer to this facility for disposal. All carcass parts shall be transported in a manner to ensure they remain contained and secured until they reach the Alleghany County Landfill location.


Fawn Rehabilitation: All fawn rehabilitation within the PSA and SSA is prohibited. Fawns may not be transported out of these Surveillance Areas and cannot be accepted by fawn rehabilitators.

2022 Hunter Requirements in CWD Surveillance Areas (PDF)

Disposal and Transport of Deer Harvested in North Carolina (PDF)