State agency confiscates stuffed wolverine, red-tailed hawk at California bar

A stuffed wolverine and red-tailed hawk have been removed from a bar in California’s El Dorado County, some 50 years after the animals were first put on display, an employee told

An official from the California Department of Fish and Game, after receiving a tip, removed the animals on Tuesday from the Georgetown Hotel and Saloon in Georgetown, bartender Anthony Fox said.

“They had been in a week before on a report that the two roosters on the wall were turkey vultures or California condors,” Fox said. “Then he noticed the wolverine.”

The establishment, which opened in 1896, had both animals on display for several decades, Fox said, adding that the stuffed wolverine has adorned the bar’s wall for half a century.

The bar is “the centerpiece of Georgetown,” Fox said. “We have stuff on the wall that dates back to the '40s and '50s. It’s part of the town, it’s part of the culture. And by them taking that, they really did take part of history, part of our town.”

Game Warden Patrick Foy confirmed to that both animals were on a list of rare, protected species that are illegal for individuals to possess — living or dead — in California.

“That’s obviously something we’re going to respond to,” Foy said. “The wolverine is the single-most endangered species in the state of California.”

No citation was issued, Foy said. The matter will be referred to the El Dorado District Attorney's Office for further investigation.

Fox, meanwhile, said the bar won’t be the same without the animals.

“We’re going to leave the space that was there vacant, and we’re going to put up a plaque,” he said. “We’re not really happy about it, it’s kind of 'big brother' flexing their arm.”