How to report dead animals on public roads and what to do if they are on private property

How you report depends on where the animal is located.

  • If the animal is on public land (roads, rights-of-way, and medians) you will want to report it to the correct agency
  • If the animal is on private property, the property or animal owner will need to dispose of it

Unincorporated Hillsborough County

Report dead animals in public roads, rights-of-way, and medians

In any city limits

In Tampa, Temple Terrace, Plant City, state roads or highways, call:

  • City of Tampa - (813) 274-8211
  • City of Temple Terrace - (813) 506-6420
  • City of Plant City - (813) 659-4200
  • Florida Department of Transportation - (813) 612-3200

On private property in unincorporated Hillsborough County:

Dead animals on private property in unincorporated Hillsborough County are the responsibility of the property or animal owner. The owner may wish to select a private service to cremate or bury it. Options may be found by searching online.

  • The owner may wish to select a private service to cremate or bury it. Options may be found by searching online.
  • If you live in unincorporated Hillsborough County and own the property, you may bury it. It will need to be at least 2 feet deep, and you will need to call 811 before digging, for your safety and to protect any underground utility lines from damage.
  • If you are a customer of Hillsborough County’s trash and recycling services, you may double-bag the carcass and place it in your trash roll cart for pick up on your next scheduled service day.

Placing a dead animal in a public road, public right of way, or on County property is considered illegal dumping and is a misdemeanor crime.

How to safely dispose

Precautions for safe handling of dead animals from Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission:

  • When handling dead birds or other wildlife, work outdoors and try to stay upwind of the carcass
  • When bagging the carcass, keep the open end of the bag away from your face
  • Do not eat, drink, or smoke while handling carcasses
  • Do not store carcasses in a cooler, freezer, or refrigerator used for human or animal food, and wash hands thoroughly after handling
  • Wash any clothing that comes into contact with the carcass with normal household detergent at normal temperatures

Steps for disposal of dead animals

  1. Open up two heavy plastic trash bags. Avoid touching the carcass with your bare hands.
  2. Pick up the carcass using disposable gloves or plastic bags worn on your hands
  3. Place the carcass in the first heavy plastic trash bag. Keep the open end of the bag pointed away from your face while tying securely.
  4. Remove gloves or plastic bags from your hands by turning them inside out
  5. Dispose of the gloves or plastic bags in the second heavy trash bag and place the first bag (containing the carcass) in the second bag
  6. Tie the second bag securely and place it in the garbage

If there are multiple carcasses to be disposed of, please first speak with your local waste management facility.

Last Modified: 2/6/2024, 5:00:30 PM

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