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Antlers won't fly on United Airlines

The shed antlers of a male caribou. Hunting organizations are taking aim at United Airlines over a recent change in the carrier's baggage policy that has some hunters unable to transport their trophy racks back home.

United has updated its "prohibited articles" policy and will no longer accept antlers or any animal horns to be checked as baggage or in carry-on luggage. Ironically, firearms and small-arms ammunition are still allowed in checked baggage.

The U.S. Sportsmen's Alliance and other hunting advocacy groups are trying to work with airline officials to come up with an alternative shipping solution.

“This decision reeks of anti-hunting bias or, at the least, really bad judgment,” said Doug Jeanneret, USSA vice president of marketing. “United needs to drop this policy immediately; otherwise sportsmen will have no choice but to let them know of their displeasure by seeking other airlines to support.”

In the meantime, those heading out of state or out of the country to hunt are being advised to keep this prohibition in mind when making travel arrangements.

-- Kelly Burgess

Photo: The shed antlers of a male caribou. Credit: Al Seib / Los Angeles Times

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Comments (1)

Earlier today, we announced that we have heard our customers’ feedback about our Antler and Animal Horn policy and are responding. Soon we will begin accepting Antlers and Animal Horns as checked baggage again.

As many of you may recall or have seen on our web site, in October 2008 we stopped accepting Antlers and Animal Horns because of the damage the tips caused to the cargo section of the aircraft and to the luggage belonging to our other guests.

We will soon publish new requirements – and ones we previously did not have – about packaging and cleaning Antlers and Animal Horns to ensure their safe, clean transport. These travel requirements will also provide information on the size of Antlers and Animal Horns we can accept based on the type of aircraft being flown (i.e., traditional jet vs. a regional jet) and the special handling fee, which we previously had in place and is similar to other items that require special care.

Stay tuned for further updates on the baggage section of united.com:



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Outposts' primary contributor is Kelly Burgess.