Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Ticket Issued For Mounted Endangered Black Wolf

illegally mounted black wolfNew York State Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Environmental Conservation Officers (ECOs) enforce the 71 Chapters of NY Environmental Conservation Law, protecting fish and wildlife and preserving environmental quality across New York.

On September 18, ECO Keith Kelly received a complaint that a large black wolf mount was being offered for sale at the Adirondack Mountains Antiques Show in Indian Lake. Officer Kelly reported that he responded and observed the wolf on display without a price tag. After interviewing visitors at the show, Kelly says that he learned that the vendor was asking $2,500 for the mount. According to Kelly, the vendor could not produce any permits to possess the wolf and was issued a ticket for offering an endangered species for sale without a permit. The wolf was seized as evidence and will be forfeited if the vendor is found guilty of the charge.

Photo: Black wolf mount illegally offered for sale in Indian Lake, courtesy DEC.

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14 Responses


    How long have they been extinct around the Adirondack mountains?

  2. Boreas says:


    My understanding is they are simply a color variant of a Gray Wolf, which is losing its protected status in the US. They were extirpated from the park around a century ago, but individuals may show up infrequently.

  3. Bruce says:

    Questions arise…has anyone determined the age of the mount? Do we even know where the wolf was killed, or when? It could be pre-Cites and all that, although the vendor may still need a permit to offer it for sale.

  4. Paul says:

    2500 bucks? Who would be dumb enough to buy that? Maybe it is the picture but the mount looks pretty crappy. Isn’t it also illegal to posses these things? I think technically having an eagle feather is illegal (there are exceptions for native American ceremonial use). Maybe that only applies to birds of prey, a federal law.

    • Boreas says:

      Given the picture, I question if it is even a wolf. To me, the feet look small for a wolf, but I know very little about taxidermy. DNA testing necessary to convict?

    • Steve says:

      With the exception of roughly seven species, it is illegal to posses a feather (or any other part) of all wild bird species, including your backyard chickadee, robin, etc.

      • terry says:

        what are the seven?

        • Boreas says:

          Gamebirds that are hunted. Turkey, grouse, pheasant, etc.

        • Steve says:

          Laws change over time, and I am not current, but when I first developed an interest in ornithology (decades ago) there were apparently seven species of wild birds not protected by the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA): House Sparrow, European Starling (both non-natives), Rock Pigeon, American Crow, Red-winged Blackbird, Common Grackle, and Brown-headed Cowbird.

          In more recent times, I believe a special permit is now required to take or possess so-called “nuisance” species (crows, blackbirds, grackles, and cowbirds), and the list of non-protected species are mostly non-native or exotics: House Sparrow, Starling, Rock Pigeon, Monk Parakeet, Eurasian Collared Dove, and Canada Geese to some extent outside of regulated hunting seasons (egg and nest removal without a permit). Mute Swan may also fall into this last category (or may not).

          I would recommend checking first with your local conservation department for the most current interpretation of the MBTA.

  5. Tim-Brunswick says:

    ECO KC Kelly is an avid outdoorsman and pretty darn sharp when it comes to these type of situations. I doubt he would’ve acted unless he was sure he was on solid ground.

    • Boreas says:

      If the vendor was claiming it was a black wolf, offered it for sale, and had no permits, Officer Kelly was certainly doing his duty.

  6. Charlie S says:

    “2500 bucks? Who would be dumb enough to buy that?”

    People are paying millions of dollars for artwork that for the life of me I cannot decipher Paul….scribbly lines and shapes and what appears to be just different color paints splotched onto a canvas. Abstract they call it. There was a piece that sold for 35 million dollars recently….I couldn’t figure out what the heck it was. Evidently the rich don’t know what to do with their money so they buy mindless art. It is beyond me!

    $2500. bucks for a stuffed black wolf? Queen Victoria’s bloomers sold for $15,000.

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