Tag Your Bobcat Pelts

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Now that the bobcat season is over for the year, sportsmen are reminded that due to the international CITES (Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species) treaty, all bobcat pelts must be tagged within 10 days of the end of the season. The CITES Treaty was passed in 1973 for the purpose of regulating the trade of endangered and potentially threatened species.

The mandatory check in of certain harvested wildlife is not uncommon in Idaho or elsewhere in the nation. In Idaho, bobcats, black bears, mountain lions and otters must also be tagged. Bighorn sheep are required to have a hole drilled and a numbered metal pin inserted into the horns of both legally harvested animals and collected bighorns. Hunters must also check-in trophy species such as moose and mountain goat.

Even though the fur trade in general is down, bobcat pelts still remain a desirable commodity because of the import restrictions on spotted cats imposed under CITIES. The value of a pelt depends on a number of factors ranging from size and color to the condition of the fur.

Friday, March 8th is the last day that pelts can be legally brought in for tagging to an Idaho Fish & Game Office. Unlike other services that are available at any hunting license vendor, bobcat pelts can only be checked-in at a regional IDFG Office during normal business hours. Certain taxidermists are authorized to check-in some trophy species, but according to Regional Wildlife Biologist Justin Naderman, "Because of the CITES requirements, only IDFG can tag bobcats."

Permit fees are $2.00 for each pelt. Sportsmen who plan ahead can save money by checking in all their pelts at once. There is a $1.50 fee for each transaction, whether one animal or ten is checked in. Because jaws are no longer required, skulls do not need to accompany pelts. Because pelts must be tagged, IT IS IMPORTANT THAT THEY BE THAWED OUT WHEN CHECKED-IN.

Anyone with questions concerning furbearers or trapping can call the regional IDFG office at 208-525-7290.