The New Year is here and with that comes change, especially for those of us involved in the area of outdoor recreation. 2019 brings significant changes that will take some getting used. Along with our partners with the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, we’re here to help you navigate through the changes which are highlighted below.

Below is a summary of the roadkill salvage rules adopted by the Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission. The rules stem from the passage of Senate Bill 372.

The roadkill salvage rules went into effect January 1, 2019

Deer and elk may be salvaged from an accidental vehicle collision, except for Columbian white-tailed deer in western Oregon. The exception to this is Douglas County where the white-tailed deer are de-listed.

If a deer or elk is accidentally struck by a motor vehicle and has to be killed for humane reasons, then only the driver of the motor vehicle may keep the deer or elk. Immediate notification to law enforcement is required per ORS 498.016 when an animal needs to be put down.

The entire carcass must be removed from the road / road right of way (including the entrails).

The person salvaging the deer or elk has 24 hours to complete an online application for a permit on ODFW’s website providing:

  1. Persons contact information
  2. Location/Time of Salvage
  3. Species and sex of animal
  4. Identity of Driver if known
  5. Acknowledge the State is not liable

The entire head of the deer or elk including antlers for buck or bull must be surrendered to ODFW within 5 business days. (ODFW wants all the heads for Chronic Wasting Disease testing); make an appointment with the local office where you will be bringing the head so ODFW biologists can validate your permit.

Salvage and salvage permits are not authorized on Tribal Reservation lands.

OSP and ODFW will not conduct game meat inspections of salvaged animals.

As noted above, salvaging of road kill has to be reported online through ODFW’s website within 24 hours and the entire head, including antlers, have to be turned in to ODFW within 5 days. Violations of provisions of this statute could result in a person being charged with Unlawful Possession of Game Parts which is a class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1 year in jail and a maximum of $6,250 fine.

If you haven’t heard, ODFW is going to a digital system for licensing and tagging. Although there will still be a paper option available, the end goal is to have everyone using digital devices, including for tagging your animals and fish.

This will be a change for us but we are not the first in the country to go to a system like this. Personally, I’m going with the digital option this year and so are my coworkers. We want to know what the public is dealing with when we have to take enforcement actions. This year will be a learning experience for all of us. Mistakes will be made but we will be looking for the ones who are intentionally trying to cheat the system.

Finally, if you look at the 2019 Angling and Hunting Regulations carefully, you will notice there are some changes there too. Make sure you read it this year prior to going out so you don’t miss any changes. The changes are highlighted in yellow so they are easier to pick up on.

Change can be good. It can be difficult at first though. I hope the road kill law helps feed some families. I hope people get use to the digital licensing quickly and they enjoy not having more paperwork to lose and having to pay to get it replaced. Hopefully everyone catches on to the regulation changes and the changes lead to increased hunting and angling opportunities in the future. That is what the New Year is all about, right? Hope. I hope your 2019 Outdoor recreation year is better than your 2018 year, even if 2018 was your best year yet.

I hope that you call me with some information on Poachers. If you have information or just questions, I can be reached at 541-440-3333 or by email at

Aaron Baimbridge is a senior trooper in the Fish and Wildlife Division of the Oregon State Police office in Roseburg.

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Community Reporter

Erica Welch is the special sections editor for The News-Review, mother of two and a native of Roseburg. She is an alumni of RHS, UCC and Western Oregon University. Contact her at or 541-957-4218.

(2) comments


The 'giant loophole' has always been there. It's called poaching. The difference is one kills the game in an accident, and the other is a just a plain lowlife criminal. The honest person follows the law and, guess what, the criminal doesn't. What this law does is help keep game killed in an accident to not go to waste.

So, if you deal in 'loopholes' stand prepared to find a trooper visiting.


Does anyone else see the HUGE loophole in the new "salvage" law; especially, if OSP-ODFW are not investigating or inspecting the meat? This law opens the door for poaching as described in the News-Review article. All one has to do is kill an animal out-of-season and untagged, go online and fill out the required information, and drop the head off. Easy-Peasy. Also, not to mention, the breaking of the law for discharging a firearm on a freeway/roadway to dispatch of the injured animal. Some of Oregon's lawmakers, in Salem, are complete idiots for the nonsense that they pass legislation on.

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