Animal HealthImport RequirementsCervids

Captive Cervids: Antelope, Caribou, Deer, Elk, Fallow Deer, Muntjacs, and Reindeer Import Requirements

Prohibited Species: Elk-Red Deer Hybrids, Axis Deer, Red Deer, Roe Deer, Rusa Deer, Sambar Deer, Sika Deer

Certificate Requirements

Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (CVI)

  • Captive cervids can only be imported to a licensed alternative livestock ranch.
  • Individual official identification must be listed on the CVI
  • Captive cervids acquired from another state/province must be marked with a Montana ear tag within 30 days of importation.
  • The following statements should appear on the CVI:

      "To the best of my knowledge, animals listed herein are not infected with paratuberculosis (Johnes Disease) and have not been exposed to animals infected with paratuberculosis.”
    “To the best of my knowledge, the premises of origin have not been the site of significant disease outbreak in the previous 24 months that was not contained and extirpated using recognized disease control standards."
    Elk only: "No CNS symptoms or deaths have been observed in the herd of origin within the last 5 years."

Permit Requirements

Import Permit

  • Import permits are only available during regular business hours (8 AM – 4:45 PM MST, Monday – Friday)
  • All paperwork and tests must be faxed to MDOL prior to permit issuance.
  • The importer of any alternative livestock species will be assessed a fee of $50.00 for the first animal plus $10.00 for each additional animal imported. Fees are assessed on a per permit basis.

Vaccination Requirements

Elk cannot be vaccinated for brucellosis.

Testing Requirements


All sexually intact captive cervids, 6 months of age and older:

  • Brucellosis negative using two of the following tests (BAPA, FPA, or CF) within 30 days of import; or 
  • Originate from a certified brucellosis free herd

Tuberculosis (TB):
Animals originating from a TB Modified Accredited State or Zone: 

  • TB test (negative) on all sexually intact animals 2 months of age and older within 90 days prior to importation AND must originate directly from a herd with a whole herd test within the last 12 months; OR
  • TB test (negative) on all animal 2 months of age and older within 90 days prior to importation into Montana AND must originate directly from a USDA-APHIS-VS Accredited TB-Free Herd.
  • Animals less than 2 months of age will be quarantined and tested between 2 and 4 months of age.

Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) - Captive cervids cannot be imported or transported from an area where CWD is endemic or has been diagnosed. The exporting herd must have completed a minimum of 60 months CWD surveillance approved by the Montana State Veterinarian. For more information call 406-444-2043.

Purity Test - Elk Only:
All animals must be certified as genetically free of Red Deer Genes


Treatment Requirements

All captive cervids are required to receive an appropriate anthelmintic treatment within 20 days of shipment and treatment must be documented on the CVI.


Identification Requirements

All captive cervids must be individually officially identified.


Miscellaneous Species Specific Requirements

White-Tailed Deer Restrictions:

  • Animals must originate directly from states lying wholly west of the 100th meridian (CO, MT, NM, WY and further west may be permitted).
  • All animals in the shipment must be certified free of meningeal worm parasites and dorsal spined larvae.

Reindeer/Caribou Restrictions:

Animals from Canada or Alaska must:

  1. Meet brucellosis and TB testing requirements
  2. Have resided in another state for at least one year, AND
  3. All female animals must have had one calf

Elk Semen Requirements

Import Permit

Elk semen shipments must comply with ARM 32.3.220.

Animal Health Bureau

Helpful Links


Contact Information

Department of Livestock
Animal Health Bureau
PO Box 202001
Helena, MT 59620-2001
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