Taxidermy Law in the UK

Taxidermy Law in the UK

 Taxidermy Laws in the UK keeps changing the governing bodies add new laws and are constantly changing these  some retrospectively this can be very complex. I have listed some basic info and how to get some help below but you need to check with the Listed Authorities to be 100% sure of any issue.

Taxidermy Laws

Originally DEFRA they changed there name to Animal Health and are Currently called there website has also changes so also the species Data Base.

Natural England

In the UK all animals are protected by some law and some that are rare or endangered have additional protection. However you and me have a general License to keep most birds and animals as long as they were obtained legally.


Taxidermy & the Law

Taxidermy You & The Law | UK Law | Export | My Label | Purchasing Birds & Mammals | Specimen Origin | Selling Items | DETR Contact | Log sheet 2000

Specimen Origin

Were taxidermy items come from?

I am glad people do inquire as to the origin of the items used in our trade, as our world has a big problem with the destruction of our wildlife and its habitat. We all need to look after this planet if we want future generations
to enjoy the diversity we are currently privileged to.

The only way a good taxidermist can work is to have a great love and respect for the beauty of the world's creatures. Many taxidermists myself included help where possible charities supporting wildlife.

The vast majority of the items I get in are killed by you the British public (albeit indirectly but this may make you think).

In the UK :

  • Millions of wild animals are killed and injured on the UK's roads each year; From an article in the Independent "A minimum of 30 million birds are killed on Britain's roads every year. Depending on the assumptions made in the statistical analysis, the death rate could be even higher: 70 million a year is not impossible." More on this  e.g.
    just Britain's roads 47,000 badgers and 3,000 barn owls are killed every year More on this.
    An Article on some New Progress on road traffic deaths Save our Owls
  • 275 million animals killed by the Domestic Cat
  • Thousands more killed by flying into windows Sparrowhawks and Kingfishers are very prone to this.Ideas to help stop this.
    In the UK, the British Trust for Ornithology estimated a few years ago that 100 million bird strikes occurred each year, of which a third are fatal. thats one in three die.
  • Thousands killed by power cables including some Golden Eagles.Worldwide:
    "Tens of millions of flamingos, storks, pelicans and other migratory birds are being killed across the world when they fly into power lines, according to a new study." NBC News
  • Sea birds killed by oil and Chemical Pollution More in the Independent
  • Otters sea birds and Dolphins killed due to fishing techniques
  • Hundreds trapped by our discarded refuse (I even had a little Owl killed by a Golf Ball)
    albertros albertros-2 This shocking video shows just how vulnerable some of our birds are Plastic KILLS dispose of it correctly!.
  • Thousands displaced/killed due to new housing development (Localized extinction )
  • Thousands killed by pesticides, eat organic its not just yourself that will benefit.
  • A considerable number killed by radiation from transmitter client working at a station found about thirty goldfinches probably the whole flock.

Owl's Killed on our Roads

BBC Article Owl's Killed on our Roads

The above gives you a good idea of some of the causes of death. There  are more items dying of natural causes or (killed by man as above) each day than all the UK taxidermists in the UK could ever do.
If you are concerned about our wild life Look after the planet ITS HABITAT our natural environment and wildlife will do what it does best look after itself.


Taxidermy Laws, You & The Law

The laws concerning the purchase or possession of natural
history specimens can be a little confusing. Should you come across
a protected dead wild creature (this means everything except game birds shot in
season and certain pest species ) and wish to have it preserved, you must consider
how the subject met its death.

Once you are satisfied that the cause of death was not illegal, make a note
of all circumstances surrounding the death then contact your taxidermist.
If you are unable to ascertain the cause, the information you do have can
help your taxidermist to decide if your specimen can be mounted.

The taxidermist must have this information to hand if it is requested by an authorized person.


Purchasing Birds & Mammals

I hold stocks of both frozen and ready mounted specimens and must be able to provide full information for each specimen. It would be
unwise to purchase modern taxidermy that has no label or marker referring to the taxidermist and there record number. If you purchase an unmarked specimen you will have no way of proving that it was acquired legally.

Certain British species are protected because of their rarity and these must have a permit to be sold. Endangered foreign species are covered by
C.I.T.E. and also need permits, because the status of any specimen and legislation can change in the future, it is wise to keep a record of any in your possession.

All my items carry full data/licence and will comply with the currant legislation

UK Law

uk taxidermy lawsIn the UK any Taxidermist wishing to sell a protected item must be registered with the Department of Environment Transport and the Regions (DETR) and obtain a licence to sell any item falling into the current perimeters of the law for that specimen.

Below is a sample of my log sheet this has been shown to the RSPB and the DETR and met with there approval as a standard Guidance log sheet .

Any person bringing me an item will need to complete a log sheet as below:

Like any respectable taxidermist our log books are always available to the authorities to inspect.

Log sheet 2004


Log Sheet for UK Taxidermists

NOTE NEW LOG SHEET FOR 2004 Taxidermists you can download for free and amend to suit. Download log 2004 in word format

(PC right click save as)

My Label

A label similar to this needs to be fixed to any protected item sold in the UK

When a protected item requiring a licence is sold, I give a copy of the licence with the specimen (the law regarding A10 Certificates now requires the original to be returned to DEFRA).

Our log books are always available to the authorities for inspection.



Selling Items

If you have an item of Taxidermy and wish to sell it you may
need to get a licence for it the above log sheet show's the typical amount of
information required (Specimen Origin ) to apply
for a licence get in touch with DETR The DETR Rm8/22 Tollgate House Bristol BS2

Antique items if the item is obviously an antique it may be exempt from some

of the legislation but it is advised that you check.

A10 Application Form 

I support wildlife charities;

some of my favourites ones are in my link page. Please take a look.


If you are wanting to take an
item out of the UK you must check with your

equivalent to the Department of the environment that you can import the item.

Typically they will want to see a copy of any licence and it is a very

straight forward process an export licence may

be needed at this end but I can sort that out.

For More information on taxidermy laws
and the Law regarding import export see the

DETR Contact

The DETR Rm8/22 Tollgate House Bristol BS2 9DJ. UK