The state Legislature in 2013 passed a bill that allows for the salvage of deer, elk, moose, and antelope killed as a result of a collision with a motor vehicle.
Only deer, elk, moose and antelope killed in a vehicle collision can be legally salvaged (MCA 87-3-145).
A person may pick up an animal that he/she did not hit. The process is the same and he/she must obtain a salvage permit.
Anyone who receives a permit and salvages a road-killed deer, elk, moose, or antelope is required to remove the entire animal from where it is found. Parts or viscera cannot be left at the site. To do so is a violation of state law and would encourage other wildlife to scavenge in a place that would put them at risk of also being hit.
To possess salvaged wildlife, a person must obtain a salvage permit. A person has 24 hours to apply for and get a salvage permit.
Permits are available at no cost, either through law enforcement officers on the scene of collisions or online through this web page.
A permit cannot be issued without a person agreeing to the Affirmation listed below, titled, "Conditions for the Salvage and Possession of Vehicle Killed Wildlife." It constitutes a legal document similar to that which is signed when a person buys a hunting or fishing license. A law enforcement officer may require inspection of the animal, parts, meat and may request the permittee take the officer to the physical site where the animal was picked up.
Be sure to fill out the entire application. The system will not allow you to print a permit without complete information.
Once the application has been made, select “PRINT PERMIT." Keep the printed permit because it is the legal document that allows possession of the salvaged animal.
A person must acquire a permit to salvage and possess wildlife killed in vehicular collisions. The permit must be signed by the applicant to be valid and must remain in their possession.
A person must obtain a permit within 24 hours of the time they take an animal into their possession. The permit must be a hardcopy (printed) permit as issued through this permit system. Electronic versions captured on mobile devices are not acceptable.
Vehicle killed animals may not be salvaged or possessed without the permit.
A person may use a salvage permit to possess an animal killed only by vehicular collision. The permit does not include other mortalities. Road-killed animals may not be tagged and possessed with carcass tags issued for the purpose of hunting.
Only white-tailed deer, mule deer, antelope, elk, and moose may be salvaged.
A person with a permit may possess all parts of an animal including meat, hide, hoofs, horns and antlers.
Any person who is picking up an animal to be salvaged must comply with all highway rules and regulations while removing the animal. Vehicles shall be parked off the roadway and out of the line of traffic. The permittee acknowledges that collecting vehicle-killed animals on state highways is inherently dangerous and is undertaken at the permitee’s own risk.
A person may not kill an injured or wounded animal that they encounter for the purpose of salvage. A law enforcement officer may, however, when on the scene of a collision, kill an animal injured in the collision and that animal may be taken for salvage.
Any salvaged animals must be removed in its entirety from the roadway by the permittee. The animal may be field dressed before it leaves the area but entrails or any other parts of the animal carcass must be removed from site to prevent attracting scavengers and predators.
Meat rendered from salvaged animals must be used for human consumption. It may not be used for bait or other purposes.
Meat rendered from salvaged animals may not be sold.
Any meat that is unfit for human consumption or unusable animal parts must be disposed of at a legal disposal site. It is unlawful to dispose of animal carcasses or parts in or upon any highway, road, street, or alley or upon public property. It is also illegal to dispose carcasses or parts within 200 yards of a public highway, road street or alley or public property (MCA 75-10-212).
Montana FWP makes no guarantee as to the fitness for consumption of wild animal meat collected under a salvage permit. Persons salvaging and consuming this meat do so at their own risk.
FWP reserves the right to inspect any animal taken under a salvage permit as well as the site at which the salvaged animal was found and removed.
By policy of the organization, Montana Food Bank Network does not accept donations of road-killed game.
By agreeing to these terms you are affirming that all statements contained in the permit application are true and correct. If you make to any false statement in the application you may be held criminally liable. (MCA 87-6-302, 303, and 304)
You MUST agree to the conditions above in order to continue with the process and obtain a permit. By clicking the link below to move on to the permit application form, you are indicating that you AGREE to the conditions.
Attention: The salvage permit system is not designed to operate on mobile devices. Do NOT attempt to apply for a permit on any mobile device.