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Kansas Offers First Photo/Electronic Deer Registration System

September 13, 2010.

This fall, the Kansas Department of Wildlife and Parks (KDWP) rolls out a new option for transporting harvested deer that allows hunters to register their harvested deer through the internet, using photos taken at the harvest site. Once registered, the hunter may then transport the carcass without the head or evidence of sex being attached. To access the electronic deer check-in, go online to the KDWP website, www.kdwp.state.ks.us, and click “Hunting/Big Game/Deer/Deer Check-in.”

This option was developed to address two important issues regarding deer carcass transportation. The first concern is about the movement of any material from a deer that may contribute to the transmission of Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD). While there is a lot yet to be learned about this disease, and how it is spread, it is believed that its transmission could be diminished if certain body parts affected by the disease are not moved from the site where the deer is taken. Because CWD affects the brain and central nervous system, the transportation of a deer head and skeleton from one location to another is considered a likely means for the disease to spread. The new registration system allows a hunter to leave these items at the kill site, minimizing the possibility of spreading the disease.

The second concern is directly related to the first. Numerous states have adopted strict regulations to prevent the spread of CWD. Typically, these regulations do not allow the transportation of a deer head with brain tissue. Hunters have been cited in other states and had their deer confiscated for not complying with the transportation laws of that state. The new registration system allows hunters to properly dispose of the head and legally transport the boned meat, as well as the cleaned skull cap and antlers, to the hunter’s home.

The registration process requires access to the KDWP website, either through a conventional, wireless, or air-card internet connection. Once logged on to the website, the hunter will need to submit two digital photographs — one legible close-up of the completed tag attached to the deer and a second showing the entire body of the deer with the head still attached. Hunters must enter the KDWP number from their permits, time and date the kill, and the county where the deer was taken. A confirmation number will be issued by email when the photos and data are successfully received. This confirmation number must be retained during transportation, so the hunter should write it down.

This is the first electronic deer harvest registration in the nation using photo documentation. The hunter is walked through the whole registration process and given the necessary instructions. Once these steps are completed, the deer head may be removed and the carcass and antlers prepared for transportation.

The new system also accomplishes more than a traditional check station. It allows hunters to register deer without the inconvenience of driving to a check station. It also allows KDWP staff to see the deer and the hunter’s completed tag without the time and expense of maintaining a check station. This flexibility is a benefit to both the hunter and KDWP.

Hunters, particularly those transporting their deer out of the state, are encouraged to use this system in order to assist in the control of CWD and maintain compliance with the laws in other states. However, hunters may transport their deer in-state in the traditional manner with the head attached. All hunters, regardless of the method they use to transport a carcass, should dispose of the waste in an appropriate way, such as burial or taking it to an approved landfill.

More information on CWD and transportation laws may be found on the KDWP website under “Hunting/Big Game/Chronic Wasting Disease.”

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