Cold Storage, Processing and Taxidermy

Valid Sep. 1, 2018 through Aug. 31, 2019.

Processing of Game Animals

A deer and pronghorn may be skinned and quartered (two forequarters, two hindquarters, and two backstraps) for transport, provided the quartered deer or pronghorn is tagged and proof of sex accompanies the deer or pronghorn. (See Cold Storage or Processing Facility, below, for exceptions). The four quarters and two backstraps are the only parts of a deer required by law to be kept in edible condition.

  • Tagging and proof-of-sex requirements continue to apply until the wildlife resource reaches a final destination AND is quartered.
  • Deer or pronghorn may only be processed beyond quarters at a location that qualifies as a final destination.
  • While in camp you may remove and prepare a part of a wildlife resource if the removal and preparation occur immediately before the part is cooked or consumed; however, all tagging and proof of sex regulations apply to remaining parts until the parts reach a final destination.

Facilities

A cold storage or processing facility may be established anywhere, including on property where hunting is conducted. It must be stationary and designed to process and/or store wild game. A vehicle, trailer, or other mobile storage or processing arrangement IS NOT lawful.

Commercial Cold Storage or Processing Facility

A person may place and maintain, or possess, in a cold storage or processing facility, lawfully killed game birds and game animals not in excess of the number permitted to be possessed by law, if:

  • the owner, operator, or lessee of the cold storage or processing facility maintains the record book as required by law with:
    • the name, address, and hunting license number of all persons placing game animals or game birds in storage (if a person other than the person who killed the game bird or animal, places a game bird or game animal in storage, that person’s name and address must be included);
    • the number and species of all game animals and game birds in storage, and
    • the date each game animal or game bird was placed in storage (information must be entered into the record book before game is placed in storage)
  • tags, permits, or WRDs, when applicable, must remain attached to birds until the birds are finally processed; and
  • tags, permits, or WRDs, when applicable, must remain attached to deer and pronghorn until the carcass is quartered.

The owner, operator, or lessee of a cold storage or processing facility is required to maintain game birds and game animals in an edible condition.

Cold Storage or Processing Facility on Hunting Lease

  • If a cold storage or processing facility on a hunting lease is made available to persons other than the landowner, the landowner’s nonpaying family members, or the landowner’s nonpaying guests, then a cold storage or processing facility record book is required. EXCEPTION: Deer, pronghorn or turkey that are properly tagged and accompanied by proof of sex may be temporarily placed in a non-commercial cold storage or processing facility on a hunting lease without being entered in the cold storage record book.
  • For turkey, proof of sex and tagging requirements cease to apply when the turkey has been entered in a cold storage record book.
  • Once a deer or pronghorn has been entered in the cold storage record book it may be finally processed. Proof of sex and tagging requirements continue to apply until the deer or pronghorn has at least been quartered and entered into the record book.

Private, Non-Commercial, Family-owned Cold Storage or Processing Facility

A cold storage record book is not required for game animals or game birds (including deer, pronghorn, and turkey) placed in a private, family-owned, non-commercial cold storage or processing facility that is not located on a hunting lease; however, all tagging and proof of sex requirements apply. If paying hunters are allowed to use the cold storage or processing facility for storage of game animals or game birds, a cold storage record book is required for all game animals and game birds killed on the property, including game animals and game birds killed by nonpaying guests or family members.

Deer and pronghorn may not be processed beyond quartering at any place other than the possessor’s permanent residence or a cold storage or processing facility where a cold storage record book is maintained. Save your tag and/or permit. After a wildlife resource reaches its final destination and tagging requirements have ceased, the possessor is encouraged to retain tags or permits in order to prevent delay or problems (cold storage or processor refusing to accept meat, etc.). When taking game (meat/head/hide) that you have processed at home to a commercial processor, simply attach the appropriate hunting license tag or permit to the game.

Taxidermist

Hunters who give any part of a game animal or game bird to a taxidermist for mounting must attach a WRD (not the tag from the hunting license or permit) to the part. In return, for deer, pronghorn, turkey and pheasant, the taxidermist must give the hunter a receipt as prescribed in “EXCEPTION” (see Proof of Sex - Exception). The taxidermist “proof of sex” receipt for the part must accompany the tagged carcass until it reaches its final destination and is finally processed. If the taxidermist places any game animal or game bird in cold storage, then the cold storage or processing facility record book is required by law. Without the appropriate record book and a WRD accompanying the game animal or game bird, a taxidermist may be exceeding the prescribed possession limits for game animals and game birds. Taxidermy information packets may be downloaded.

A taxidermist who accepts a deer or turkey shall retain the accompanying WRD or tag for two years following the return of the resource to the owner or the sale of the deer or turkey mount to recover taxidermy cost.