CWD special hunts


  • Saturday, Dec. 26, through Sunday, Dec. 27, 2020
  • Saturday, Jan. 2, through Sunday, Jan. 3, 2021


  • 343
  • 605
  • 643
  • 645
  • 646
  • 647
  • 648
  • 649
  • 655

Map highlighting the DPAs included in the special hunts in SE Minnesota: 643, 646, 647, 648.

Map of the CWD special hunts

Interactive map

The hunt area for 2020 includes deer permit areas from the entire southeast management zone; one DPA in the southeast control zone; and the south metro management zone

The hunt areas were determined by chronic wasting disease detections from this fall hunting season, including CWD-positive wild deer found in DPA 643 (near DPA 343) and in DPA 605, and previous hunting seasons in southeast Minnesota. They include DPAs where additional information about disease prevalence is needed through disease testing.

Special hunts are an important tool in disease management, helping limit the disease spread and showing where disease is more prevalent through CWD testing of harvested deer.

Basic hunt information

  • Hunters must get any harvested deer tested for CWD by providing a sample at a self-service sampling station. See details below.
  • Carcass movement restrictions will be in effect for this hunt; whole carcasses cannot move out of their respective disease management zones until a "not detected" test result is received. Dumpsters will be available for hunters to dispose of carcasses.
  • The hunts are open to both residents and non-residents.
  • Archery hunters participating in the archery season that continues during the special hunts must submit samples for any deer harvested in the permit areas open for the special hunts.
  • Blaze clothing is required, even in archery-only areas.
  • There is no bag limit for bucks and does.
  • Cross-tagging for bucks, commonly called party hunting, is allowed for both bucks and does.
  • The antler point restriction regulation is not in effect.
  • Some state parks, state scientific and natural areas, and federal lands will be open to hunting. Special permits are required in some areas. See the "Where can I hunt?" section below for complete information.
  • The shotgun zone still applies to these hunts; rifles are not allowed.
  • Crossbows may be used with landowner, firearms or disease management permits. Hunters who choose to hunt with a crossbow may not party hunt with firearms hunters. 
  • Coyote hunters must wear blaze orange/pink during legal shooting hours for deer hunting and may use any legal firearm for taking coyotes, but may not take deer while coyote hunting.

Licenses, tags and permits

  • Any unfilled 2020 deer license, tag or disease management permit is legal for the hunts. However, parent license weapon restrictions are still in place. (For example, a hunter using an unfilled archery license must use archery equipment. However, the hunter may purchase a disease management permit for $2.50 and use a firearm.)
  • During these hunts only, a parent license is not required to purchase a disease management permit.
  • During these hunts only, disease management permits are valid for taking antlered bucks or antlerless deer.
  • Disease management permits are $2.50 each; hunters may purchase as many disease management tags as they want.
  • Antlered deer cannot be tagged with bonus tags or early antlerless tags.

Registration and testing

  • Hunters must register their harvest before submitting the deer’s head. (Do this by phone at 888-706-6367; online; or in-person at one of these locations.) Getting your deer tested for CWD does not count as registering your deer.
  • The head of any harvested deer must be dropped off at a sampling station by 4:30 p.m. the Monday following the hunt. Sampling station locations are posted below.
  • CWD testing is mandatory for all deer. This includes deer that a person may consider mounting. (Hunters can work with a participating taxidermist to have their deer sampled, which are listed on the the respective area pages: southeast management zone page; southeast control zone; south metro management zone.)
  • CWD test results typically are posted four to five business days from the date of sampling. Inclement weather and holidays may cause additional delays; it can take 7-10 days.
  • Results can be checked online at or by calling the DNR Information Center at 888-646-6367. In both instances, you will need to know your nine-digit MDNR number from your license.

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Where can I hunt?

  • Some state parks, scientific and natural areas, and federal lands will be open to hunting. To avoid overcrowding, special permits will be required to hunt in select parks/areas, in addition to a hunting license. These areas are listed below.
  • Most public land in the area is open to hunting during the special hunts so those areas may be crowded. Use Recreation Compass to locate public land.
  • Much of this special hunt area is private land. The DNR's authorization of these special hunts does not create open access to private land. The trespass law still applies.
South metro public land


PlacePermit RequiredNo. of Available PermitsHunt No.Special Notes
Savage Fen Scientific and Natural AreaNoNot applicableNot applicableArchery hunting only
Cannon River Turtle Preserve Scientific and Natural AreaNoNot applicableNot applicableOnly portions within DPA 605 are open
Cannon Wilderness ParkYes

Sold out

Sold out

809 (Dec. 26-27)

810 (Jan. 2-3)

Archery hunting only
Carver Rapids Unit of the Minnesota Valley State Recreation AreaNo, but requires a valid state park pass on vehicleNot applicableNot applicableArchery hunting only
Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge: Wetland Management DistrictNoNot applicableNot applicableAll waterfowl production area (WPA) units within the special CWD hunt boundary are open; federal hunting special regulation apply
Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge: Wilkie Unit and Louisville Swamp UnitNoNot applicableNot applicableRefuge hunting special regulations apply
Nerstrand Big Woods State Park and Prairie Creek Woods Scientific and Natural AreaYes (also requires a valid state park pass on vehicle)

Sold out

Sold out

807 (Dec. 26-27)

808 (Jan. 2-3)

Firearms hunting only
Vermillion Highlands Research, Recreation and Wildlife Management AreaNot applicableNot applicableNot applicableCLOSED TO SPECIAL HUNTS
(Due to previously scheduled special hunt and other restrictions)
Southeast public land


PlacePermit RequiredNo. of Available PermitsHunt No.Special Notes
Cherry Grove Blind Valley Scientific and Natural AreaNoNot applicableNot applicable 
Rushford Sand Barrens Scientific and Natural AreaNoNot applicableNot applicable 
Forestville/Mystery Cave State ParkYes (also requires a valid state park pass on vehicle)

Sold out

Sold out

801 (Dec. 26-27)

802 (Jan. 2-3)

Pin Oak Prairie Scientific and Natural AreaYes

Sold out

804 (Jan. 2-3)

Closed Dec. 26-27
Great River Bluffs State Park and Kings and Queens Scientific and Natural AreaYes (also requires a valid state park pass on vehicle)

Sold out

Sold out

805 (Dec. 26-27)

806 (Jan. 2-3)


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What do I need to do after I harvest a deer?

1. Register your harvest the same day it was harvested.

Do this by phone at 888-706-6367; online at; or in-person at one of these locations. (Full details on each method available here.) Getting your deer tested for CWD does not count as registering your deer.

2. Provide a sample.

Any deer harvested during the special hunts must be tested for CWD.


Sampling locations are listed below


Once at the station, follow the instructions listed to properly submit your sample by dropping off the head of your harvested deer. (Note: If the tag is not filled out correctly, the deer may not be tested.)

This video shows you what to expect and what to do at a sampling station.

You will need to provide the township, range and section of your harvest location on the tag. You can find this information on the map at the station, which notes TRS information in a grid on the map, or by using the DNR Recreation Compass. If using Recreation Compass, simply click the map in the area you hunted, and a pop-up box will come up under the County header, preceded by PLS (which is the same as TRS).

What if I want to keep the antlers of my deer?

Deer heads will not be returned to hunters after sampling, so if you would like to keep your antlers and provide a sample, register your deer and then provide a sample in one of the following ways.

Use a self-service sampling station.

  • Take your own lymph node samples either by extraction or by caping the deer yourself. 
    • Bring the caped deer head to a self-service sampling station or submit your lymph nodes in a zip-lock bag. Fill out the hunter's information on a red tag and record the age and sex of the deer. Retain the head for at least three days so staff can verify you took the correct samples. If you took the wrong sample, we will call you.
  • Skull cap your deer, follow instructions to leave the head, and take the antlers away with you.

Bring your deer to a listed taxidermist to get it sampled.

Specific taxidermists will remove the samples for you and submit them to the DNR for testing. (Using a taxidermist for sampling will result in a longer turnaround time for your CWD test results.) Taxidermists may charge a fee for caping. Information on cooperating taxidermists for each zone can be found here:
3. Keep whole carcasses in the disease management zone until you receive a “not detected” CWD test result.

Map of carcass disposal locations for 2020 special hunts.

Whole carcasses of all deer, including fawns, must stay within the disease management zone until a "not detected" test result is received. A whole carcass can be moved within your disease management zone, but not from the southeast management zone to the south metro management zone or vice versa. Deer carcasses from DPA 343 can be moved into the southeast management zone.

Dumpsters will be available for hunters to dispose of carcasses; see map or the list below for locations.

See the carcass import and movement restrictions page for more details.

The head, spinal column and all brain material must remain in the zone until the test result shows a “not detected” confirmation. To leave your disease management zone without waiting for a test result, you must properly quarter your deer or bone out the meat, and dispose of the carcass properly. Learn how to quarter your deer by watching this video.

Alternately, you may take the deer to a meat processor within your special hunt area. 

4. Stay tuned for your test results.

Check test results at or by calling the DNR Information Center at 888-646-6367.

A DNR official will contact you only if your deer tests positive for CWD.

Where do I bring my deer for sampling?

Map showing sampling station locations for 2020 special hunts.

Self-service sampling stations

All locations are open starting at 9 a.m. the first day of the hunt until 4:30 p.m. the Monday following the hunt. Look for an orange "CWD Sampling Station" sign and black barrel (examples: image 1image 2).


Cannon Falls

Lake Byllesby Goodhue County Park

5001 Highway 19 Blvd.
Cannon Falls, MN 55009

Rice County Fairgrounds (enter off 2nd Ave. NW)

1814 2nd Ave NW
Faribault, MN 55021

HastingsLake Rebecca Park (first left off Lock and Dam Road)415 Lock and Dam Road
Hastings, MN 55033
KenyonKenyon Meats116 Spring St.
Kenyon, MN 55904

Rice County Highway Department shop

110 5th Ave NW
Lonsdale, MN 55046
MontgomeryEdel's Meat Market (enter from Spruce St.)124 First St. N.
Montgomery, MN 56069
New Market/
New Market Township Hall

8950 230th St. E.
Lakeville, MN 55044

New PragueSkluzacek's Quality Meats400 Main St W.
New Prague, MN 56071
RosemountVermillion Highlands DNR Wildlife Office15325 Babcock Ave. E.
Rosemount, MN 55068
ShakopeeU.S. Fish and Wildlife Service – Wilkie Unit parking lot5981 County Road 101
Shakopee, MN 55379


Within the southeast control zone (carcass import and movement restrictions apply)

Where a dumpster is available (indicated with a ), it is on-site at sampling station unless a different address is noted.

AlturaWhitewater WMA Wildlife Office15035 Highway 74
Altura, MN 55910
Pine IslandVacant lot
(west of the entrance
to the Dollar General parking lot)
105 1st Ave. NE
Pine Island, MN 55963 

City Brush Dump
(222 Center Drive
Pine Island, MN 55963)

PlainviewKreofsky Do It Best Building865 Enterprise Drive SW
Plainview, MN 55964

Within the southeast management zone (carcass import and movement restrictions apply)

Where a dumpster is available (indicated with a ), it is on-site at sampling station unless a different address is noted.

CaledoniaHouston County Fairgrounds1316 E. Washington St.
Caledonia, MN 55921
ChatfieldMagnum Sports20 Main St. S.
Chatfield, MN 55923

Pope and Young Club
(273 Mille Creek Road NW
Chatfield MN 55923)

DexterHamilton Auction Company130 State Highway 16
Dexter, MN 55926
HarmonyWest of townNear intersection of 120th Street and Kingbird Road (319)
HoustonBP Gas Station801 MN-16
Houston, MN 55943

Stinson Country Style Meats
(402 W. Cedar St.
Houston, MN 55943)

KassonHardware Hank11 Fourth St. SE
Kasson, MN 55944
La CrescentLa Crescent Joint Public Works Facility450 S. Chestnut St.
La Crescent, MN 55947
LeRoyLake Louise State Park12385 766th Ave.
Le Roy, MN 55951
MabelSteam Engine Days Park90 E. Alpine Ave.
Mabel, MN 55944
PrestonDNR Forestry Office912 Houston St. NW
Preston, MN 55965
RochesterDNR shop at Gordy Yeager
WMA – Southwest Unit

2300 Silver Creek Road NE
Rochester, MN 55906

RushfordPam's Corner Convenience107 MN-16
Rushford, MN 55971 

Rushford DNR Shop
(305 Industrial Drive
Rushford, MN 55971)

St. CharlesWinona County Fairgrounds
(behind A&W All American
518 W. 6th St.
St. Charles, MN 55972
Spring ValleyCity Lot across from Spring
Valley Public Utilities
104 S. Section St.
Spring Valley, MN 55975 
StewartvilleBear Cave Park800 10th St. NW
Stewartville, MN 55976 
WinonaMills Fleet Farm920 E. Highway 61
Winona, MN 55987 
WinonaWilson Truck and Trailer Repair29622 County Road 12
Winona, MN 55987

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