Harvesting Road Kill; Is It Legal In New York? What’s for Dinner?
What are you having for dinner tonight? I'm told that I should try to expand my menu of fond foods. I suppose I am willing to do that but how far will I take it? Probably not too far. I certainly won't be eating road kill anytime soon. Is that even legal?
Yesterday, while driving through the Capital Region, I saw a truck pulled to the side of the road and a man with a shovel scooping something up. Is that what I think it is? Is he harvesting road kill?
The majority of residents that find a dead animal near their driveway or in the middle of the road will call their local highway department and they will remove the animal. I also learned that it appears to be legal to harvest road kill in the State of New York.
In some cases you would need a salvage permit from the Bureau of Wildlife and on occasion local police will allow you to take a dead deer. Let's say you hit one with your car, police may write a tag for you to take it.
According to NYS DEC you need to report the finding of a dead deer, elk, moose, bald or golden eagle and other wild animals. They also remind you of the health threat to humans when handling dead animals.
Whether for taxidermy or dinner, it appears it is legal to harvest road kill in New York State, if you do so properly. If you want to eat, here are some recipes for you.