AUGUSTA, Maine — Maine wildlife officials are encouraging hunters in the state to consider donating game meat to the hungry as Thanksgiving nears.

The Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is asking hunters to participate in the Hunters for the Hungry program. The Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation and Forestry uses the program to distribute game meat donations to food pantries, soup kitchens and shelters.

The program is accepting donations of deer, moose and bear meat. The main hunting seasons for those animals all end on Saturday. The program also takes road kill donations as long as the meat isn’t damaged.

Hunters interested in participating in the program are encouraged to call 207-287-7513.