2014 - 2015
New Regulations take effect Sept. 1, 2014. Download a PDF of the current 2013-14 Outdoor Annual.

Cold Storage, Processing and Taxidermy

Cold Storage or Processing Facilities

A cold storage or processing facility may be established anywhere, including on property where hunting is conducted. It must be a stationary facility designed and constructed for the purpose of processing and/or storing game animals and game birds. A vehicle, trailer, or other type of mobile storage or processing arrangement IS NOT a stationary facility.

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, 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.)
  • the name and address of each person who places a game bird or game animal in the facility, if different from the person who killed the bird or animal
  • tags, permits, or WRDs, when applicable, remain attached to birds until the birds are finally processed;
  • tags, permits, or WRDs, when applicable, remain attached to deer and pronghorn antelope until the carcass is quartered; and

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 (see Hunting Lease License, pg. 30) 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 or antelope 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. 
  • Proof of sex and tagging requirements cease to apply when a deer or antelope has been quartered and entered in a cold storage record book. 
  • Once a deer or antelope that has been entered in the cold storage record book it may be completely processed.

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

  • A cold storage record book is not required for deer or antelope placed in a private, family owned, non-commercial cold storage or processing facility that is not located on a hunting lease.

NOTE: 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 your 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 wildlife resource document (not the tag from the hunting license or permit) to the part. In return, for deer, pronghorn antelope, 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 bird. Taxidermy information packets may be obtained at www.tpwd.texas.gov/warden/forms.

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


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