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Animals of Montana roadside menagerie license revoked

A decision by Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks to revoke the license of Animals of Montana, Inc. was affirmed in the District Court of Lewis and Clark County earlier this month.

Animals of Montana is considered a roadside menagerie, and before its permit was revoked, the company provided animals for filmmaking and photo shoots. The company owns a grizzly bear, black bears, coyotes, gray wolves, bobcats, lynxes, a Siberian lynx, a badger, red foxes, a pine marten, porcupines, fishers and a black leopard.

It is the responsibility of FWP to license these types of facilities and businesses. In 2015, FWP inspected the Animals of Montana facility and found numerous violations, which resulted in the department filing a “notice of revocation, imposition of penalties and opportunity for hearing.”

This case has been in process since then. After an administrative hearing last year, FWP Director Martha Williams decided to revoke the license. Animals of Montana filed a petition for judicial review in district court and the court supported Director Williams’ decision.

With the license revoked, Animals of Montana cannot use the animals in their possession to make money. FWP is working with the company to determine the disposition of the animals at the facility. Animals of Montana has filed a notice of appeal of the decision to the Montana Supreme Court.