updated 9/19/2007 12:26:14 PM ET 2007-09-19T16:26:14

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has fined a man $800 for flying dead snakes and birds inside his luggage from South Korea to Atlanta.

  1. Don't miss these Travel stories
    1. Lords of the gourd compete for Punkin Chunkin honors

      With teams using more than 100 unique apparatuses to launch globular projectiles a half-mile or more, the 27th annual World Championship Punkin Chunkin event is our pick as November’s Weird Festival of the Month.

    2. Airports, airlines work hard to return your lost items
    3. Expert: Tourist hordes threaten Sistine Chapel's art
    4. MGM Grand wants Las Vegas guests to Stay Well
    5. Report: Airlines collecting $36.1B in fees this year

Last month, security officers at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport found 30 snakes, a dead bird and pieces of several other birds in his luggage.

The animals were all dead, but screeners took extra precautions because U.S. Fish and Wildlife officers warned that some of the snakes, which were packed inside jars and bottles, could still contain venom.

U.S. Fish and Wildlife officers issued two citations against the man — one for failing to declare the unusual cargo and another for violating laws intended to protect endangered species.

"They're typically used in traditional Chinese or Asian medicine," said Darwin Huggins, Fish and Wildlife agent in charge of Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. "Some of the snakes had scorpions in their mouths. And they were preserved in wine. It's a medicinal type wine that certain cultures drink."

The passenger, whose name has not been released, was contacted at his home in Florida.

The animals were inside boxes checked as luggage on a Korean Air flight, which arrived in Atlanta on Aug. 15.

Federal Transportation Security Administration officials say international baggage is routinely screened and it is not unusual to find animals and animal parts.

But such a large number of animals is odd, they said.

Airport officials said they did not know what the man planned to do with the animals.

© 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


Discussion comments


Most active discussions

  1. votes comments
  2. votes comments
  3. votes comments
  4. votes comments