A new law in Oregon has made selling trophy mounts much easier. The Mail Tribune is reporting that trophy owners 65 and older can now sell their mounts to interested parties … as long as the owner can prove the kill was legally tagged.
The Oregon Fish and Wildlife Commission voted last week to allow older hunters to sell taxidermy mounts and antlers still attached to the skull. Prior to this change, trophies could only be sold if they were unclaimed by taxidermy customers or sold in estate sales.
The rule’s wording permits hunters to sell their trophies after submitting a) the tag used on the game animal or b) a signed affidavit saying the animal was legally tagged after being killed. Beginning in 2017 sales will only be valid if the tag is presented.
In order to sell the mounts, a $25 processing fee must be paid for the first five mounts. Additional mounts will cost $5 each.
Trophies from animals both native and non-native to Oregon can now be sold.
The rule change was made after a hunter in his 70s tried to downsize his home in 2014. With less room to display his blacktail bucks, 10-foot Alaskan brown bear, sheep, cougar, and other mounts, Patrick Ackerman considered selling his roughly 50-piece, $70,000 trophy collection. Ackerman told the Statesman Journal that selling part of the collection would have allowed he and his wife to retire comfortably.
Only after speaking to a former Oregon State Police officer — the Oregon State Police fish and wildlife division enforces Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife game laws — did he realize that his trophies were, by and large, ineligible to be sold. Oregon only allowed mounts of non-native game species to be sold, so even though Ackerman had killed a mule deer in another state, he was unable to sell its mount in Oregon because mule deer existed there. Proper documentation made no difference.
Adding to the irritation Ackerman felt, his wife could legally sell the trophies as part of a one-time sale after his death, but he could not sell them during his own lifetime. The Statesman Journal said Ackerman was advised by officials to sell the mounts out-of-state, but no wiggle room would be given in Oregon.
Two years later, Ackerman and sportsmen like him can sell their trophies without interference.