HELENA — A proposal to allow people to salvage roadkill for food is in the fast lane to the Montana governor's office after the state Senate gave its initial backing.

The measure calls for law enforcement officers to issue permits to remove the carcasses of elk, deer, antelope and moose off the state's roadways.

An earlier version would have allowed fur-bearing animals, upland game birds and migratory game birds to be scraped up, too.

Supporters say the measure would stop good game meat from going to waste.

Opponents question whether the meat would be safe and say the measure would create liability issues for food banks that accept it.

The state Senate approved the bill Wednesday in a 33-15 vote. It must pass a final vote before it goes to Gov. Steve Bullock.

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(26) comments


At first glance this might appear to be a crazy redneck sort of bill, but considering that some folks would take advantage of obtaining salvageable meat it has some value. The biggest problem would be collecting the animal soon enough. The only way it would really work would be to make it legal to just load them up with no permit required. Finding a LEO to issue a permit would be cumbersone and take up law enforcements time unnecessarily. The same would be true of FWP. If the animal could be taken to FWP and THEN a small fee paid that might work.




the question should be why wouldn't we allow this? I find it revolting but if someone wants to eat roadkill then let them have at it.

right is right
right is right

Sounds like an exceptional lunch menu item for our politicians in DC. Although, I doubt whether any seaf-respecting road kill, with any taste, would come any where near these people.


Right is Right-I think all of the politicians in DC AND Montana are dining on the finer cuts-especially those left in the sun a bit too long. Do we expect to see it on the menu at the newly opened Northern? I think not.


I can't understand why this shouldn't be allowed. There are plenty of hungry people in this state that would be grateful for the meat, and obviously it would only be fresh kills. Of course, it would have to involve a minimum of red tape in order to be effective - but why waste a perfectly good animal that was just alive and could feed a family for quite some time?


My God, where do I live?


That would be Montucky.

lefty the cowboy

Back in the day, a lot of Montana families ate venison all year, and the game wardens largely looked the other way. Now we can just weld up an extra sturdy bumber and grill guard for our biggest and oldest pickup and go run down dinner.

Chuck Feney
Chuck Feney

Road Food

When you're drivin' and you strike a critter
Get your knife out, don't delay or fritter
'Cause you'll eat well tonight
If you catch 'em in the light
When you're a highly trained big game hitter.

Don't be picky about how they die
Just load 'em up so you can fry
Some nice road kill chuck
Or if they're hit by a truck
Get ready for some road pizza pie!


Better yet....

You're driving at night,
don't see the bugger,
He hits your truck
like a great big mugger!
The truck is wrecked,
you swear like heck.
"this skinny buck
in trade for my truck?"

I don't think so.

I Hate Bankers
I Hate Bankers

I think an EXCELLENT idea would be to serve "road kill" at every polictical function in Montana, feature it as a "special of the day" on the menu at the State Capitol and if anything is left over ,,,, freeze it and send it to the U.S. Congress as they don't deserve the finer cuts of meat or fish such as aged beef and pan fried trout.


In some states it is legal to take it. if you hit the deer you can have it. It's got to be pretty bloodshot . but I think if it can be salvage give it to the zoo for feeding the tiger, wolf, And bear

Howard Wilkinson

I agree with Fldr........... I can't imagine waiting for a MHP to show up, then butchering the animal and eating it!! Most roadkill will have so much bloodshot "shock area" meat that there would be little left worth keeping, not to mention the issue of bleeding out and cooling the carcass fast enough. Dog food anybody??

vote republican

Many states already allow this with the understand that a large amount of the animal goes to the local food bank or shelter. In most states you have to be on a list and when a call comes in that involves road kill the cop calls the nearest person on the list and they come and pick it up. I think it is a good idea and it will keep the waste down.


New Mexico gets hot enough in the afternoon in the summer to hit and fry on the hood. Take along some vegetables and you have a Mongolian grill. I guess in Montana you carry a camp stove and a can of vegetables in the trunk.


yep roger wolves taste real good served warm with lead.


Would a guy get to keep the antlers too..Roadkilled elk emm, beats paying a scum outfitter..

lefty the cowboy

I would point out that magpies, ravens, crows, eagles, skunks, coyotes, ants, beetles, wasps, fly larvae and bacteria all need to eat, too. Let's not be greedy, now.


There goes the six pack of beer and a possum in a sack now that they won't let us keep them.


Most or you are looking at worst case instances. I hunt & legally get my meat but one case that I thought was a total waste was driving back from the mtns. & came across a yearly cow moose that had just died. Still warm & eyes glassy. Wasn't sure how it died but thought that's a lot of meat to leave to waste, but did report to FWP 6 hours, later they arrived & said it had been bumped by a car on the gravel road. By the time they got there it was bloated & unfit for human consumption so they hauled it up for the bears. At least something benefited from it. But I'm sure that if it had been taken care of right away it would have made some excellent table fare.


Ya mean salvage of Road Kill was against the Law ??? Damn, I didn't know that ? Once ya get it into your freezer, does that make it legal ? Sounds like a proposal SD25 Kendall Vandyke would "Champion" for passage. No, wait a minute, come to think of it, seems his focus is on legalizing drugs and perverted behavior. Lets see, when are elections ?


Years ago I knew someone who hit an elk in Oregon, they proceeded to take it
home and cut it up etc. it was the toughest meat they ever had.


Bash em with your Buick and finish em with your AR-15 with the 100 round magazine.


Does this include drive by shooting of animals by the road? Down south there is a lot of wild pigs free for the taking and not many people hunt them. These pigs eat prime food and are in good shape but the locals there can only eat so many the rest they shoot and leave. So if there was a market for the meat would there be many wild pigs or should they introduce some wolves from Canada?


Ironically, wild game lovers are proud to say that their meat has been raised without antibiotics, growth hormones, and GMO feed.

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