Can I take roadkill deer?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by indypartridge, Mar 17, 2005.

  1. indypartridge

    indypartridge Well-Known Member Supporter

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    This morning, for the third time this winter, I've seen a deer on the road, less than a mile from my house as I drove to work. It's cold. It's 4:30am. It's only been there a few hours, at most.

    Can I take it? Should I take it? Do I have to register it someplace so I'm not accused of poaching?

    Also, I'm clueless about butchering a deer. Can anyone recommend any books or videos for someone who's never dressed a deer, or seen it done?
     
  2. cowboy joe

    cowboy joe Hired Hand

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    Don't know about Indy, but New York requires that all deer are tagged. There is a big fine and the potential loss of hunting privledges if you get caught without a tag. I call the local sheriffs for a road kill tag if I find one worth taking. Be prepared to wait as stopping by to give you a road kill tag is a real low priority if you live in a busy area.

    You probably won't want the meat if the belly is bloated but sometimes the hide is worth the effort. I learned how to butcher as a kid so I don't know which books or videos are any good. Maybe someone else can help you out there. Best suggestion is to find someone who can teach you first hand.
     

  3. NWSneaky

    NWSneaky Well-Known Member

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    Take it, the law could care less. Just get involved if you have the inclination ------ don't buy a book or video, just skin the hide off, you will see as you go. Then take the loins down the spine for feasts. Rump is like round steak, front legs are mighty bony.
     
  4. RedneckWoman

    RedneckWoman Well-Known Member

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    I am not sure about where you are but WV has a law that allows for the taking of roadkill. We don't have to turn it in here, I can't say for anywhere else.

    If it's only been there a couple of hours and it's cold out I don't see why you couldn't. I would see how badly it was mangled and then go from there lol. If it isn't too bad go for it. Just cut off the bruised parts.

    I haven't seen any butchering videos for a while but here is a site that shows the cuts and a bit of info http://www.chefdepot.net/agingwildgame.htm
    If you have any homesteading books that show how to butcher a goat it's the same thing.

    Oh, btw, get a sharp knife.
     
  5. NWSneaky

    NWSneaky Well-Known Member

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    Sorry for being abrupt but you folks are WRONG. ONLY in hunting season is it necessary to tag a deer. As an attorney I find most judges to believe, "Get it off a road, don't bother the sheriff, if a man wants to feed his family ------ etc."

    BTW do you know deer kill more humans than any other critter in existence?????? They are the deadliest animal on earth --- car wrecks, etc.
     
  6. Cindy in KY

    Cindy in KY Well-Known Member

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    If we'd have seen a deer get hit & die, sure we would take it if they gave it to us. In KY, if the driver who hit it calls the police (when needed) the police gets on the phone, and goes down the list of folks who will take the deer. Once I was right there, saw it happen to someone else, and he called and no one on his list was home, so he gave it to me. Perfect young doe, fat and healthy, gave 85lbs in the freezer. Most states will put you on the list for deer I think.

    Plus, we have friends who like to hunt, and they give them to us when their freezers are full. But they gut them right away, before they bring them to us.

    They are not hard to do at home, if you know how to do it. Do you have any friends who could help you learn? They are very heavy too. We don't let ours hang for days, we just skin them, wash them good and start butchering.

    We did a whole huge cow in the yard a couple years ago, the neighbor gave her to us, she was down (from calving) but healthy. It took 3 of us about half a day, and then me 2 more days to get it all cut up and in the freezer. Best beef I have ever tasted.
     
  7. Helena

    Helena Well-Known Member

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    One year when my husband didn't hunt dear I was obligated to get one and did...with the car. Of course the dear took the worst of it and was killed and the car was actually in pieces in the road. Stopped and started up at a slow speed and still what a mess !! But went home and dragged hubby out of bed at 1 AM (coming home from work..not a night on the town ) and brought it home. Called the game warden and all he said was to keep the skin a few days and if they didn't stop buy for it , that was ours too. So...perhaps PA is different than most states. I wouldn't take an animal unless I saw it hit at that moment. Don't know when it was killed or died naturally.
     
  8. gilberte

    gilberte Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Do yourself a favor and check with your local fish and game enforcement officer. Laws vary from state to state. Here in Maine if you want to keep the deer it must be reported and the officer will affix a tag to the carcass. As a matter of fact if you give meat to someone else, the tag number is supposed to be on the packages of meat

    This time of year I wouldn't even think about eating a deer, road killed or otherwise. Now from June to December, bring it on :D
     
  9. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    I agree with Gilberte. Check with your local game ranger. My FIL was a game ranger and used to take the meat to people in need. He usually got to the meat while it was still fresh and made my hubby and brothers clean it up. Then he would deliver it to families that could use it.
    If you are planning on cleaning it yourself, they'd probably be happy.

    One thing to watch for is bone chips.........when they have been hit by a truck or car, there are usually quite a few bone chips.

    Good luck to you! :)
     
  10. Mutti

    Mutti Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Know when a huge buck hit the side door of my hubby's truck while chasing a doe we just called the sheriff and he said take him home...skull fractured and no damage to any meat so we had some great free meat. Here in the most deer-populated county in MO a rare road trip goes by without deer bounding accross the road....can't imagine why I haven't hit one yet. My boss hit a deer and ended up in a coma for 5 weeks and left with residual memory problems; almost died. DEE
     
  11. tooltime

    tooltime Border Ruffian

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    Sorry, sneaky, but your free legal advice fails to recognize that laws vary state to state.

    In MN, the driver of the vehicle can claim the deer, but must get a possession permit from DNR (it's free). Driver can transfer possession to another individual or to DNR. In our county, the conservation officer has an arrangement to take it to a local locker for processing and then it goes for distribution to food bank.

    For anything other than deer, roadkill that has salvage value is confiscated by DNR and sold for highest price they can get. (Moose, bear)
     
  12. Little Quacker in OR

    Little Quacker in OR Well-Known Member

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    ******************************

    Once again, you are wrong. It's the mosquito that's responsible for the largest number of human deaths on the planet. Some one has to do it.

    LQ
     
  13. Little Quacker in OR

    Little Quacker in OR Well-Known Member

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    ********************************
    What do you have against asking the very people who KNOW the answer to this question? Call Fish and Wildlife..they'll tell you. :rolleyes: And while you are at it do some research on your computer about what diseases that deer carry these days that can infect you and your family. Not a pretty picture. Things are no longer what they used to be. Be careful.
    LQ
     
  14. NikiandAlex

    NikiandAlex Member

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    Is that the type of unhelpful, snide remarks the rant thread has been talking about?

    Call the proper organizations to check if you can take it, just to be sure you don't get some sort of ticket, but I've never heard of a problem in claiming road kill.
     
  15. debitaber

    debitaber Well-Known Member

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    in michigan, if you hit a deer, and call the police, the ywill give you a voucher, towards fixin your car, and help you load the deer, to bring home. My son hit a deer, got his truck fixed, nd got the deer, in the freezer.
     
  16. Michael W. Smith

    Michael W. Smith Well-Known Member

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    Well, here in PA, it used to be the law that you had to call the game warden who would then let you take the deer and use the meat. However, you did have to go to his house with the deer hide and do paperwork. I did that once.

    During hunting season, one got hit by a car in our area. I tried to call the game commission, and had the hardest time finding their phone number. Nobody answered, so it laid there.

    In December, I happened upon a deer doing it's last kicking in the middle of the road (Car pieces everywhere, but they must not have been concerned because they kept driving.) I pulled it off the road, called the local butcher who does deer, and had it processed. I could care less if it was legal or not. No use in letting it go to waste.

    If you can use it and are so inclined, GO FOR IT!
     
  17. wildwanderer

    wildwanderer Momma, Goatherder etc....

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    In New Jersey, one of my students a trooper gave me a book of tickets they were permits for road kill. This allowed me to legally take roadkill as long as I was somewhat inconspicuous. Here in Arkansas, you don't see much roadkill except domestic pets. People here seem to see it as a gift from the gods. We hit a deer about two months ago and three people stopped to see if we were going to take the meat. Of course we did.
    If you check around the net you will find butchering instructions. But just don't puncture the bladder.

    Good luck and take care - Thea
     
  18. silentcrow

    silentcrow Furry Without A Clue

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    The Pennsylvania Game Commission has changed things. You do need to report a picked up roadkill and obtain a permit. They will ask where it was hit (road and county) and if it's a buck or doe. They don't bother with the hides anymore, unless they suspect poaching. I imagin they will take antlers...dunno, haven't gotten a buck roadkill this winter. Permit is good for 120 days, but you are not allowed to give away any of the meat. It has to stay on the permit-holders property. You can, however, have it processed if you don't do your own butchering. I only know this stuff cause I've had 2 roadkills this winter...needed the meat, and it's good eats :)
     
  19. GRHE

    GRHE Mountain Ogre

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    It has been 30 years since I was an IN resident, but as I recall at that time, if you hit the animal and failed to report it, that was hit-and-run against state owned property, and thus a moving vehicle violation. If you did report it, it would be ruled an accident, and you were allowed to take it. As I recall, back then anyway, Michigan openly asked you to take the animal so they did not have to clean it up. Many Western states, at least until recently, required you to leave the animal as carrion for scavengers, but have finally started realizing that this simply results in more dead animals and accidents from the scavengers encounters with later vehicles. A few states even require you to report the animal so that they can try to collect it and either use it in zoos and animal rehab centers or for homeless facilities. Every state has different rules, so the correct call is either contact your game or motor vehicle people either should know the rule for your state. You need to know your states rules to make a valid answer. LQ, trolls rarely care if any statement they make is accurate ;)
     
  20. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

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    NWSneaky is off his meds ignore him.

    Call your local DNR or the Sheriff. They will most likely come and give you a free salvage tag for it. They do it all the time around here. No need to be sneaky about it. It is done all the time.