Animal attraction in shop display

An unusual zoological window display at a Dunedin auction house is causing a bit of a stir.

Proctors Auctions in George St is displaying an assortment of exotic taxidermied animals in its front window before an auction later this year.

Animals from the private collection include a lion, a moose, water buffalo, a baboon, dozens of mounted deer heads, various birds and lizards.

Auction house owner Ronald Proctor said all the animals had been shot in the 1960s by a Queenstown "big game" collector. They had been  part of  an exhibit in Queenstown called Wildlife World until about 10 years ago.

Since going up in the shop’s front window the display has captured the attention of the passing public.

Jordan Proctor moves a mounted moose head into Proctors Auctions in George St yesterday. The...
Jordan Proctor moves a mounted moose head into Proctors Auctions in George St yesterday. The mounted head is part of a collection of about 50 taxidermied animals from a private collection which will be auctioned in March. Photo: Stephen Jaquiery
"The amount of people who have stopped, especially young kids coming in with their parents, has been amazing," Mr Proctor said.

At first Mr Proctor worried there would be some backlash from animal rights activists but the public’s reaction had been almost completely positive.

There had already been interest in some of the animals from local collectors and Mr Proctor hoped most of the pieces would stay in Otago.

It was difficult to put an estimate on how much the collection would sell for but some of the bigger animals, like the lion, could sell for between $5000 and $10,000, he said.

The collection will be auctioned  on March 3.

tim.miller@odt.co.nz

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