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Your thoughts on our current wildllife law...

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by kbauman, Dec 29, 2009.

  1. kbauman

    kbauman Active Member

    Please read:

    In Oklahoma, we as taxidermists, are not allowed to sale or recoperate our losses on mounts that are left by customers who are unwilling to pick up their mounts. Their is a new bill being introduced that would allow us to do this. It looks like our wildlife department is not in favor of the bill, due to taxidermists participating in a "black market" of selling wildlfe. What are your thoughts and what are your state laws pertaining to the sell of mounts left in your shop due to customers failing to return and pick them up.
  2. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    In Arizona,........

    In Arizona you can sell animal parts all day long, except migratory birds, protected species, etc..

    In Arizona you cannot sell native animals from Arizona that are whole (alive or frozen).......but you can sell skins and animal parts without a problem. You can also sell mounted specimens (except migratory birds, protected species, etc.).

    I do see people from Arizona selling whole, frozen squirrels, bobcats, etc. and THAT is illegal. But skinning them or mounting them and then selling them is fine.


  3. What a taxidermist does to recop loss, should not be any of the states business unless the state wants tp pay for the individuals taxidermist loss.

    Laws dont stop the balck market.
  4. damonkus

    damonkus Member

    Kentucky went through the same thing in the 80's..here is Ky's law...had to get the legislature to do it. The FWL was against it here too.

    KRS 150.4111 Sale of legally taken wildlife.
    (1) Any person may sell the inedible parts of any legally taken wildlife to
    a licensed taxidermist for the purpose of mounting. A licensed
    taxidermist may buy or sell the inedible parts of any legally taken wildlife
    for the purpose of mounting, except as otherwise prohibited by federal
    law. Any person may purchase from or sell to a licensed taxidermist any
    legally mounted specimen.
    (2) Within ten (10) days after the end of each month, a licensed
    taxidermist shall send to the department a report indicating the number
    and name of the wildlife of each species which he purchased during the
    preceding month and the name and address of the person from whom
    he purchased the wildlife.
    Effective: July 15, 1988
  5. Brian Claar

    Brian Claar New Member

    I know, that sucks Ken. In PA we can sell them but you have to purchase a Permit first.

    I don't know what they are worried about. The State is already collecting tax's from us. Now they want a piece of our loss.
  6. Paul C

    Paul C New Member

    Ken, a lot of states are going to be seeing Bills like this in the near future. The sale of wildlife and the commercialization of wildlife are still hotbed issues and seem to be getting worse with the bad economy. Politicians "think" they are helping the situation (and they might be) but without careful wording legitimate businesses can suffer.
    I'm not sure how politically involved the OKTA wants to get but, perhaps, the association could form a committee to provide some input to the politicians from a taxidermist's perspective. For example, when PA's laws on taxidermy were changing one of the things that remained was the ban on the sale of wildlife. The PTA worked out a compromise that provided for a "Sale of Unclaimed Specimens" Procedure to be written---not unlike that of KY. Basically, what it amounted to was a simple $5 permit obtainable from the PGC when a taxidermist wished to sell an "unclaimed specimen". No "report" necessary but a separate permit must be obtained for each specimen to be sold.
    There are still several things to be worked out such as the sale of personal specimens or capes but it was a start and now PA taxidermists aren't "stuck" with unclaimed mounts.

    If the OKTA is going to do anything it should do it soon. Once Bills like this pass and become Law politicians are very reluctant to revisit them.

    Good luck and keep us posted.
  7. Seems like a good spot for the OKTA, NTA and UTA to get involved.
    Isn't that what these associations are there for?
  8. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    ARS 17-371

    Arizona Revised Statute (ARS) 17-371

    E. Heads, horns, antlers, hides, feet, or skin of wildlife lawfully taken, or the treated or mounted specimens thereof, may be possessed, sold and transported at any time, except that:

    1. Migratory birds may be possessed and transported only in accordance with federal regulations.

    2. It is unlawful to sell the heads, horns, hides, feet or skin of bighorn sheep taken on or after October 1, 2005, but the department may sell heads, horns, hides, feet or skin of bighorn sheep that were illegally taken and confiscated by or donated to the department.


  9. Raspy

    Raspy New Member

    So what if a OK taxidermist needs a replacement cape for some reason, can they not purchase one? I live in OK and I am a newbie and have been studying the laws. My take is that they can not purchase one, just wanted to clarify. Any help from any of the Associations to pass this bill would at least be a start in the right direction. I Dont know how much help I can be, but I am willing to help anyway I can. The more people the better.
  10. clewis

    clewis New Member

    In the final analysis, success of legislation like this (based on an industries losses) boils down to statistics - how big a problem is this? How much actual money is lost per year? How many people are affected? How much will it cost to implement if passed. and so forth. Why are other remedies (small claims court and etc) not sufficient? The government side will have a never ending pile of data - sometimes relevant, sometimes not, but it will be recovered and part of the coming debate. To be successful an equivalent set of "counter-data" will have to be prepared.

    With the Game Department possibly opposed to the legislation, it will take some close monitoring to see something like this through, testifying as the bill progresses through committee and the two floors, as well as other preparatory things. Be prepared for a tangent taking over the main thrust of the original bill - controversial issues seem to always whip around like the tail of a kite in a wind storm never being able to predict where they will go - but with committed involvement and the fact that other States have laws that work on the same topic, the chance for success is improved. In the mean time, consider collecting the following information from your OK Taxidermist colleagues –

    1. How many taxidermists are there in OK? If you do not know or can not recover it – be prepared to address why it is not known? This could lead to one of those tangents I mentioned
    2. How big is the taxidermy industry in OK in dollars per annum when compared to others?
    3. How big is the problem of unclaimed trophies in dollars? What are taxidermists doing with this presumably huge number of never ending unclaimed animals now?
    4. How much total money is lost - remember, based on my read, if you charge a deposit and it totals more that the parts mentioned in the legislation that are recoverable, you could not sell it anyway as you have already been paid for your "costs" It seems to me what you are looking for is recovering the difference between the deposit and the total fee including storage fees or more depending on the current "value of the animal"
    5. What other remedies are available to collect/recover your losses? Are they used? If not why not?
    6. What other taxidermy related issues are currently controversial in OK and how much publicity have they had – poaching? taxidermist arrests? – what is the public perception of OK taxidermists?
    7. How many “CO-SPONSORS” are signing on to the bill? If there are none, any chance that it will make it through committee is remote.
    8. If the issue is statistically supportable, can you rally sufficiently vocal, committed and respected taxidermists to stay the course – and it will not be free. Are there any OK taxidermists that have political ties on other issues or know legislators or their aides personally? How do other industry partners feel about this in OK – tanneries? suppliers? Etc. How would it affect their business?
    9. With opposition by the Game Department, are there compromises? Can the Game Department position be changed? How much will they say monitoring this will cost them over and above their current budget?
    10. Check with other States on how they got their law on this issue passed.

    Issues of legislation are almost never “clean” and always laborious and lengthy – but if the issue is worth fighting for, get after it.

    I will add this issue to the UTA January Board meeting agenda to see if/how the UTA can help.
  11. kbauman

    kbauman Active Member

    Great responses from all and it is exactly what I was looking for. As of right now the Senator or his office has not involved the OKTA. I e-mailed the senator offering our support and help, but I haven't heard back from him. There has been the above article published, in which Terry is one of our members, but the other gentleman mention is not. There was a TV news broad cast where another one of our members was spotlighted. Both members have done a good job representing our taxidermists.

    Craig, you post in very in-depth and could very well help out if the association enters into the picture. As always the OKTA appreciates the UTA's support and your leadership.
  12. duckfeathers

    duckfeathers New Member

    All you Pennsylvania people. Until you get a printed info package of what your licensed to do with the issue of your license, then all talk, web posts, and other conjecture is considered heresay ....
    You are paying $100 for a license to do something in specific. A summary of what you can do and what you cannot should come with each license issued. Here is an example of taxidermist jeopardy in PA... Would you take in a antlered deerhead for mounting if the state tag was taped to an antler and not tied through a hole in the ear??? Some COs will slam you $100 for an improperly tagged deer as the book says the tag must be through an ear hole. I have Carl Roe (CEO of PGC) recorded on Pennsylvania Cable Network saying it is okay to attach the tag to the antler if the head is intended to be mounted. This is a problem because law is written and heresay is vaporous and you the individual are vulnerable despite your best efforts to be law abiding. I say "Give me a rulebook". For $22 a hunter gets a 95 page book with a hunting license purchase. For $100 the taxidermist gets nothing. For me I can see potential trouble coming. Taxidermy associations are cheaper then lawyers. I am proud to be a member of the PTA but todays taxidermy associations need to get stronger.............
  13. mike g

    mike g Active Member

    Nebraska has no taxidermy rule book but there is alot of rules that must be followed.

    I order to leagally sell unclaimed mounts (property) we must sue the customer in county court and get a judgement. However, that judgement could be the mount (property) for payment or the customer could get several years to pay the debt in which the taxidermist must hang on to the mount (property) according to the judgement ruling.

    There are other rules reguarding game birds, we can not sell one feather unless it is a pen raised bird with papers.
  14. bowerbird

    bowerbird New Member

    Firstly l would find it a little abrasive that any government agency suggest / infer hat this bill is to stem the so called " black market" trade of "taxidermists" in your state,,what level of proof exists that such activities are specifically the whelm of taxidermists, and not by persons processing wildlife - unlawfully.
    We had the same issue in our country (Australia ) 30 years back and our association sought representation to State Wildlife Authorities in the formulaion of Regulations on taxidermy in this state ( vic ), and the sale of mounted protected wildlife.
    They too did not want to see the sale of mounted specimens unless you paid the fee of a Protected wildlife licence, which at that time was 600 dollars per annum
    In the initial meeting it was put very bluntly by our association that you cannot derive the potential benefit of breeding from dead specimens as do the live keepers,, and hence justify a high licence fee.The average person wanting a native bird or animal will not pay,,don't allow the sale of legal specimens, and you will create a black market, allow the feasible sale of legal specimen's, and you will have monitor and control of specimens on a system that is of user pay.

    In essence our association introduced, along side the taxidermy licences, wildlife keeper licences, wildlife dealer licences etc a licence known as a "specimen licence", in which it was the onus of the PURCHASER, not the owner or seller ( which in most instances is the licenced taxidermist) to have a licence for the transfer of the specimen.
    If you don't have a specimen licence, you cannot purchase the mounted wildlife from the legal licence holder.
    It applies to mounts only, not skins or frozen wildlife, and again only a licenced taxidermist can perform taxidermy or process/preserve native species.

    Basically if anyone from the public wishes to buy ANY protected specimen mount, they must apply for a licence,,which is essentially a 3 year term licence at a cost of 20 dollars.
    Once the purchaser can provide the licence number details, we, the seller can transfer the mounted wildlife. We record the recipient's details in our official record books, ours in theres and the transaction is complete.

    It is a great benefit for collectors, artists and anyone in the private or corporate sector wanting to access mounted specimens lawfully.

    An annual return is done, and again its each licence owners responsibility.

    Yes there is a draw back of added book work, and when licencing taxidermists in our state began all those years back, other state operators inferred we were mad to allow licencing to be brought in because of the "added book work".

    After 30 years of record keeping, our state taxidermists conduct more sales ,win more interstate contracts on projects than any of the unlicensed states, simply because they can supply legally obtained specimens under a licenced system.

    Give the concept of a specimen licence some thought, and don't let the opportunity of change pass if advances can be made
  15. Brian Claar

    Brian Claar New Member


    I agree, they should supply a general book to go by with each license renew.

    The tagging of a deer in the the Rule book does not say through an ear hole. It says the tag must be attached to the ear, nothing in there about a Hole. I always tell people to use Zip ties around the base of the ear.
  16. Arkansas has one rule of sorts. You have to have the wildlife transfer tag. This is from the hunter or fisherman to the proccessor or taxidermist. Our problem is this, fishing guides never get the client to sign the transfer tag. Then you guys also know how sometimes the chain of possesion is, Joes sends a deerhead but Jim, who drops it with his Brother in law Earl, who brings it to you..

    Now we have a really screwed up chian of possesion. Its against the law period.

    Now here is another scenerio, Game warden Joe dropps a bear of to be made into a rug.
    Joe leaves it with Brian the taxidermy man.

    Brian call Elroy who does some wholesale rug work and send the mounted head and skin to elroy.

    Now this leave Game warden Joe in violation of the law and two taxidermist in violation.

    evenour fur guy at the game in fish does not know if we can buy and sell bear hides legally.

    We all want to work within the law, but we cannot even get a real copy of the regs. we get a book thats got a 100 pages and its got a disclaimer about it being the law!!!!!

    So if the disclaimer about the book, (which by the way has a transfer permit pictured in it) is the transfer permit really law?