Skip to Main Content

What You Need to Know About Hunting in Disease Management Area 1

The DWR confirmed chronic wasting disease (CWD) in Virginia for the first time in Frederick County in 2009.  Disease Management Area 1 (DMA1), formerly known as the Containment Area, was created in response to this initial CWD detection.  DMA1 includes Clarke, Frederick, Shenandoah, and Warren counties.

If you are hunting in DMA1 this fall, please be aware of the following:

All counties in DMA1 are subject to Earn a Buck regulations and are open for early (Sept. 2 – Oct. 6) and late (Jan. 7 – March 31) antlerless-only general firearms season on private lands.

Mandatory CWD Sampling will occur in DMA1 in Shenandoah County on Saturday, November 18, 2023. All deer harvested in Shenandoah County on this day must be taken to either a DWR staffed CWD sample station (Larkin’s Store: 19004 Senedo Rd, Edinburg or Woodbine Farms and Market Inc: 5199 John Marshall Hwy, Strasburg) or a voluntary refrigerator drop off station (list and map linked below). DWR staffed sample stations will be open from 8AM to 7PM.

Whole deer carcasses and certain carcass parts from deer killed in DMA1 cannot be legally transported anywhere else in VA outside of the DMA1 boundary. Click here for more details on carcass transport.

Deer heads plus 4 inches of neck from a deer harvested at any time during the season in DMA1 may be brought to a CWD deer head drop site for voluntary CWD testing.  Hunting in a DMA does not guarantee that you will harvest a CWD-positive deer but it does make it more likely when compared to hunting elsewhere in Virginia.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that all deer harvested from areas known to be affected by CWD be tested prior to consumption. If you would like to get a deer harvested in DMA1 tested any time during the deer hunting season, bring the deer head plus 4 inches of neck to any of the Department CWD deer head drop sites for free CWD testing.  See the following websites for more details:

Deer feeding is prohibited year-round in DMA1 and in all of the following counties in VA: Albemarle, Augusta, Bland, Buchanan, Carroll, Clarke, Craig, Culpeper, Dickenson, Fairfax, Fauquier, Floyd, Fluvanna, Franklin, Frederick, Giles, Grayson, Greene, Loudoun, Louisa, Madison, Montgomery, Orange, Page, Patrick, Prince William, Pulaski, Rappahannock, Roanoke, Rockingham, Shenandoah, Spotsylvania, Stafford, Warren, Wise, and Wythe counties, and all cities and towns within these counties.

Hunting season dates, either-sex days, Earn A Buck requirements, and other deer hunting regulations for counties and cities included in DMA1 can be found in the Hunting & Trapping Regulations section of this website.