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Sask. company fined $60K for illegally importing taxidermy mounts including baboons, giraffe, hippo

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A Saskatchewan company has been fined $60,000 for illegally importing and possessing taxidermized animals that are considered protected wildlife, such as baboons, a giraffe and hippo.

Known as OSY Rentals, the numbered Alberta company based in Major, Sask., approximately 200 kilometres west of Saskatoon, pleaded guilty on Tuesday to two offences under a Wild Animal and Plant Protection Regulations act, according to Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC).

The charges stem from a shipment that was on its way to Major, Sask. from Texas before being intercepted by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) in Manitoba in May 2023, ECCC said.

During the interception, CBSA officers discovered taxidermized animals including a hippopotamus, giraffe and mountain lion.

Following further investigation, more than a dozen other taxidermy mounts were seized including kangaroos, baboons and at least one black bear, ECCC said. 

According to investigators, the company did not have the required permits to import the taxidermized animals into Canada.

“These species are listed under Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). This means an export permit from the country of origin is required under WAPPRIITA for import into Canada. Since the business did not have the required permits, enforcement officers detained the shipment,” ECCC said in a news release.

The company also posts videos on YouTube in an online web series titled “Oh Sh!t yeah”.

One video posted to YouTube by the company, which has now been deleted, also showed taxidermy mounts being unboxed and unloaded from a trailer.

ECCC said all of the taxidermy items were forfeited to the Crown, with the fine being directed to the Government of Canada’s Environmental Damages Fund.

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