Should You Be Eating Roadkill

Paul Pinkerton

Please don’t read this article if you have an issue with the subject of eating roadkill.

There are some people that grow up eating various animals that many people would not consider a common staple on their dinner tables, such as rabbit and deer. Some people also eat things like hunter’s stew, which can contain raccoon and opossum, two animals that most people will rarely if ever eat in their lives.

One this same note, there are several reasons why roadkill should not just be left to rot on the side of the road but rather brought home to make up a meal. Here are some of the reasons as to why a person should eat roadkill and not just leave it wasting away at the side of the road.


First and foremost, as a human you have the responsibility to eat any animal that you have killed. This can be extended to cover a person who is driving irresponsibly and ends up killing an animal, it is not right to leave that animal on the side of the road to just waste away.

A person should acknowledge that the death of this animal was their fault and it should not be in vain. Let the dead animal at least feed people, so that its death at least means something.

It also makes ecological sense, many of the animals in the world are dying out at a fairly startling rate due to human consumption. Farming and all of the meat that humans eat have really done a number on a lot of animals all over the world. If a person can limit their environmental impact and eat the food that is already there and killed then it will be one step in the right direction of not needlessly killing off so many other animals.

It seems to me that we have a minimal number of animals that we eat, Cow, chicken and pig being about it for a lot of people, heck, some only ever eat cow.

If an animal is hit on the road and killed, just leaving it there to rot is just a waste. While there are many other animals who may eat the roadkill, sometimes when they do this, it can cause these animals to become roadkill themselves.


For those that do not care as much about any moral implications of leaving an animal on the side of the road, there’s always the argument that it’s a cheap way to get meat. An animal can provide many meals for an individual or family and can make a large difference to food bills.

This is where some people come a bit unstuck, they agree that eating roadkill is a good thing but they have no idea how to do it, or they can’t face doing it. Both of these situations are created by the modern supermarket age where everything is provided for convenience, because of this there are less and less people that know how to fend for themselves.

There are a few ways to get the job done, you can watch some videos and give it a go, find someone that does know how to do it, a friend or even a butcher can show you what to do.
You can attend courses that teach you how to prepare animals for cooking and how to cook them. Ultimately if there’s a will, there’s a way for you.

Most people just automatically dislike the idea with little thought, some that have thought about it might be opposed to eating roadkill because they believe that it could be dangerous to eat, this is not the case.

It can actually be quite safe to eat, you just need to take the proper precautions. This is where some proper knowledge can be very useful and it’s worth investing the time learning. If it’s fresh roadkill, the animal looks healthy and you cook the meat well, it should be absolutely fine. Learn what a healthy animal looks like, both inside and out, if in doubt ask someone that knows. It’s easier to be cautious, avoid all the internal organs unless you’re confident in what you’re doing and just go for the main meat sources.

Another thing that can be a big plus, especially in this more enlightened world is your own health, generally road kill is going to be a healthy animal, not injected with growth hormones, antibiotics and who knows what else, to pump it up and then keep it alive, so it’s has the maximum monetary value.

It’s much more likely that a wild animal eats natural foods and is truly healthy. There’s a saying ‘You are what you eat’ Healthy into your body, healthy you!

The freedom to eat roadkill is different all over the world, it’s even different from state to state, some will allow you to take and use any thing, other places the state claims the animal so you can’t touch it and there’s everything in between the two, some countries you can’t take what you’ve hit and killed, but you can take it if you’ve not killed it yourself, so if you see the car in front hit the deer, he can’t take it, but you can.

You need to do your homework on this, make sure that you’re working responsibly within the law, it’s easy to do, so there’s not excuse not to.

I hope that you give it a go and that it works out for you, ultimately you need to remember that it’s your responsibility to stay safe and stay within the laws that govern your use of roadkill.

I hope that this article has got you thinking, it’s entirely up to you if you participate or not, but even if you don’t, you should appreciate and not judge those that do enjoy the odd, free, healthy and very tasty gifts of meat that come their way.

Happy Chompin…


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jack-beckett is one of the authors writing for Outdoor Revival