Draft roadkill collection regulation open for public comments

h/t WGFD

(Cheyenne, WY) – The Wyoming Game and Fish Department is taking public comments on the recently released draft of Chapter 70 – the regulation that will govern the collection of road-killed wildlife.

The draft rules outline the proposed requirements and permission system for picking up big game that has been killed on select roadways in Wyoming to be put toward beneficial use. 

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The draft regulations were written in close coordination with the Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) for collecting road-killed deer, elk, antelope, moose, bison or wild turkey.

“Safety is a main concern,” said Mike Choma, law enforcement supervisor. “It can be dangerous to stop on a busy highway, so the drafted regulation includes a series of safety requirements that Game and Fish and WYDOT feel are essential.”

As drafted, safety considerations bar people from picking up carcasses from extremely busy roadways, such as interstates 25, 80 and 90. It also disallows collection in active construction areas and within national parks in Wyoming. Other rules outline where to park for collection and the use of emergency flashers, as well as banning field dressing on the roadway.

Limiting the spread of disease is another concern. For wildlife managers, preventing the spread of chronic wasting disease (CWD) is the foundation for requirements such as taking the whole animal — both edible and inedible portions —  and following all carcass transport and disposal procedures — same as a hunter.

In the draft rules, Game and Fish also addressed the concern that people may attempt to cover up illegal taking of wildlife by passing it off as roadkill. Choma said the rules help deter that. 

“The proposed regulation addresses illegal taking of wildlife right up front. The permission to collect roadkill is only valid for unintentional motor vehicle collisions and no one is authorized to euthanize an injured animal under these regulations,” Choma said. “People who submit false information will be in violation.”

Game and Fish is working closely with WYDOT to develop a mobile application to authorize people to collect roadkill, as well as an online option. An electronic authorization will be required for anyone who wants to collect a carcass.

The full draft of Chapter 70 is available online and open now for comments on the Game and Fish website until September 24th. A public meeting will be held in Casper at the Game and Fish office beginning at 6 pm Thursday, August 26th.

The Wyoming Game and Fish Commission will be asked to approve the regulation at their November meeting in Riverton. Until approved and effective, no one is permitted to collect road-killed big game.

Click here to read the draft and submit comments.

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