LOST CREEK, W.Va. (WBOY) – Two deer dumpsters are back in Harrison County, now that the 2022 deer season has commenced.

On November 19, two dumpsters were placed at separate locations to collect deer remains. The sole purpose of these dumpsters is to prevent hunters from throwing deer carcasses or remains on the side of the road. This way, the Harrison County Solid Waste Authority can dispose of the remains legally at a landfill.

Locations of the dumpsters include:

  • Enterprise – Manley Chapel Road, across the bridge
  • Lost Creek Parking Lot – The four-way in Lost Creek

There used to be a third dumpster on Jones Run outside of Lumberport, but it was not able to be monitored as effectively as the other two. It was said that the dumpster was receiving other trash besides the carcasses.

Richard Barnette, Harrison County Solid Waste Authority Executive Director, spoke of why dumping deer remains on the side of the road is problematic. He said, “It creates a litter problem along the roads for, you know, anybody that might live in that area. It pulls in scavenger animals and now you have a safety issue with these animals being up next to the road when you’re driving. And you know, a lot of them; it’s—night time is when they’re in there tearing those bags apart, so it creates a safety issue on the road.”

After a while of collecting remains, the dumpsters do begin to build up a smell. The two locations of the dumpsters help the Waste Authority monitor the bins. There are no set times on when the dumpsters are replaced. They usually decided to switch the bins out when they look to be getting full. In past years, they had switched the bins out three to four times between the first day of deer season and the end of December.  

These dumpsters for deer remains have been put out every year for more than 15 years. The idea came about from the past director at the Harrison County Solid Waste Authority. He was in contact with a few state agencies to discuss the problem the county had been having with deer carcasses being dumped on the side of the roads. Barnette said that the Division of Natural Resources (DNR) had even set up cameras to try to catch the people who continued to dump the remains. It had become such a huge problem that the Harrison County Waste Authority wanted to give people a place to dump them instead.

Over the last three years, the Waste Authority has averaged around 21 tons of deer carcasses that have been taken to the landfill from the two dumpsters. Tons by year are:

  • 2018 – 23.6 tons
  • 2019 – 22 tons
  • 2020 – 20 tons
  • 2021 – 25 tons

The dumpsters can be used until they are removed around Christmas, or the week after.