(Last Updated: 7/28/2017)
Salvaging road-killed deer and elk
A rule adopted by the Washington Fish and Wildlife Commission allows people to legally salvage deer and elk carcasses in the state. The rule specifically applies to deer and elk killed by motor vehicles. Only elk – not deer – may be salvaged in Clark, Cowlitz, and Wahkiakum counties, because federal laws prohibit handling endangered Columbian white-tailed deer in southwest Washington. Anyone who takes possession of a deer or elk carcass must obtain a free, printable permit from WDFW within 24 hours. The permittee must then keep a hardcopy of the signed and dated salvage permit with the meat until all of the edible parts are consumed. The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife does not guarantee that salvaged meat is fit for consumption, and encourages those planning to salvage deer and elk carcasses to review its Wild Game Meat Food Safety information. The new salvage rule also does not authorize trespassing on private property or ignoring highway-safety rules. For more info visit http://wdfw.wa.gov/licensing/game_salvaging/
If a small dead mammal is found on your property and appears to have died of natural causes, use a shovel to place the carcass in doubled plastic bag. Dispose as garbage. Or, contact a wildlife removal service to remove the animal.