My wife just walked in the door with a beautiful dead owl that she found on the side of the highway. It still has the dead mouse in its talons. I made a phone call and found out to my surprise that it is apparently against the law to stuff one. Can anyone confirm this or give me suggestions. Thanks, Ben A.
Return to Bird Taxidermy Category Menu
In the US, all hawks and owls are protected. Private citizens are not allowed to have them mounted or even in their possesion. Only schools, museums, etc. can have them, and then only with the proper paperwork. You have two options, throw it away, or call the local game warden and see if any local institutions might want it. With option 2, you run the risk of alerting a warden that you already having an illegal bird in your possesion, and depending on the warden, you might find yourself in trouble. Me, I would get rid of it ASAP.
Take Bruce's 2nd option and discard it IMEDIATELY! By law, we commoners aren't even allowed to posses a feather off a Bird of prey....or even a Song Bird for that matter.If it were me, I would have her put it right back were she found itand NOT in your Garbage can!
I know that its a shame,but these Laws are realy implemented to protect the species.
Even in a situation where as one can be LEGALLY killed for destruction of livestock and fowl, the bird still MUST be discarded.You will not be allowed to keep it.
Good luck and have a good day,
With a lite Orange sauce, touch of cloves. maybe a nice Kiantai' french sliced green beans, Garlic mashed potatos. For desert a chilled raspberry swirl cheese cake, drizzeled semi-sweet chocolate syrup mildly sweet whppied cream. and Latta.
That sounds really good, but I think you stole that recipe.
I've seen it before only it was for Archiopterix. Do you need to soak it in clorox first?
Regulations regarding possessing a bird of prey or any part of a bird of prey are unforgiving. Ignorance of the law doesn't help much - particularily, if you are an aspiring taxidermist. My advice is to return the bird to the location your wife found it - then call the nearest US Fish and Wildlife office and advise them - they may do nothing or they may pick it up. Depending on what part of the country you are from and your proximity to an indian reservation (Native Americans can possess birds of prey parts)some tribes have a standing request list with the US Fish and Wildlife service and are given the birds of prey for use in their cultural/ceremonial/religious activites. At least then parts of the birds are harvested and used. But, under no circumstances say anything to anyone about even having such a bird in your possession - it is absolutely illegal and a federal offense. Most of us who have been in the field for a while have horror stories about persons who failed to heed the advice and keep the bird in the freezer only to be visited by a fed and be cited - it is not worth it. Take care and good luck - hope it all works out for you. As a matter of interest, there are only two birds that are not protected (game birds and mirgratory waterfowl in season excepted) the starling and one specie of sparrow.
I live in Canada & our laws are somewhat different in that if you find wildlife such as birds or other animals, you may take them in to the local F & W office & they will decide if you may obtain a licence to possess the wildlife. In most cases they simply take it away from you & have a nice day. This is the most thoughtless response that one can expect from our leadership. I do agree that if they handed out permits to every situation then it might stimulate killings just for trophy, but the reality is that the mojority of people who find animals & birds found them legitametely dead on road. I think what we need to do is lobby the governments to re-asses these types of situations & allow people to obtain permits (even for a small fee) so that @ the very least we may be able to recreate these specimens & view them in our homes. So many animals & birds get wasted every year because the F & W simply dispose of them. This causes people to not even bother picking them up. As for me I have been bucking the system for some time & will continue to try to get the laws changed.
Wow! This has been a learning experience. Thanks for the advice everyone. The owl has been disposed of.
I know how you must feel after all the great advise you just got. I came across a gorgeous huge snowy owl last year that had flown into a high wire near the highway and broke its neck. I called DEM about it and they immedietally wanted to know where it was, who I was etc. What SHOULD happen is when found, you should be able to take the animal to your local Fish and Wildlife service office and have them examine it. If they can plainly see that it was not shot and such, they should register a numbered tag and attach to the animal with a non-removeable tag clip and then you can do what you want with the animal. The laws werecreated to protect against the harvesting of protecte species so they can flourish. Problem is, they would rather let a dead animal rot by the side of the road, than have someone enjoy it for what it is. As long as you follow the rulkes when found, and have it examined etc, you should be able to get a license to keep it. Untill the tree huggers and all get a life and start getting some credibility back, and realize that since the animal is already dead and its death will mean more if it can be enjoyed by all than torn apart by coyotes on the highway, this will never come to be. To BAD!
Same story, but I was told I had to turn it in because it was illegal to throw it away. I just told them I found it not that I picked it up.