One traveler’s unconventional carry-on at an Alaska airport this month provided a teachable moment for fliers around the country.
“Yes, you can bring moose poop to a checkpoint!” Lisa Farbstein, a spokesperson for the Transportation Security Administration, wrote in a Twitter post on April 23. “And someone did last week at Juneau Int’l Airport.”
Farbstein went on to say that even though the TSA doesn’t have rules keeping travelers from showing up at security checkpoints with animal droppings, she can’t speak for airlines themselves. She advised travelers packing poop to check before flying “because having to leave souvenir poop behind would be crappy.”
TSA wrote in an Instagram post that “several carriers do have rules in place to avoid smelly situations aboard their planes.”
According to the TSA, the man’s carry-on was flagged at Juneau International Airport on April 15 because equipment caught “a large organic mass” in the luggage, which could have been a sign of explosive material, the KTOO reports.
That’s when officers looked inside and discovered the bag of feces — and when the man told them “that he collects this and likes to present it, ‘For politicians and their bleep policies,’” Farbstein said, according to KTOO.
Farbstein shared a photo of the moose feces in a plastic bag as a security screener wearing gloves picked up one of the droppings.
“TSA actually will screen just about anything people bring to the checkpoint,” Farbstein said, according to KTOO. “But it is smart — and if it’s more on the unusual side — to check with an airline to see if they have any limits or restrictions as it relates to what it is you want to bring.”
An Anchorage Daily News reporter wrote on Twitter that the man used the moose poop for his intended purpose: needling politicians.
About a week earlier, the reporter had shared a photo of a plastic baggie a protester was handing out with a message to the state’s governor about his budget — and some moose droppings.