Message #166: From: AzTeC SW Archaeology SIG To: "'Matthias Giessler'" Subject: Laws Prohibiting Theft of Petrified Wood Date: Fri, 24 May 96 15:11:00 MST Encoding: 74 TEXT From: Cathy Johnson I am constantly being asked about the laws on collecting petrified wood. I can't find a law for or against it (except in the Petrified Forest National Park). Do you know of a law that applies in Arizona to state or federal land.Thanks for your help. ------------------------------------------------------ Cathy -- Thanks for your inquiry. For prohibitions on federal lands, you should check with someone like Bob Rogers, BLM Special Agent in Charge (Arizona) (602) 650-0339. Here's what I can tell you about Arizona Laws: ARS 41-853 names petrified wood as the official 'State Fossil.' [no puns please] ARS 41-841 protects vertebrate paleontological sites (and hence vertebrate fossils); it also says "...or any other paleontological or historical feature..." [regarding this phraseology, the law may be open to interpretation...check with the AZ AG's office]. ARS 37-501 provides a penalty for anyone on State Trust lands who knowingly extracts or removes oil, gas, coal, mineral, earth, rock, fertilizer or fossils of any kind or description therefrom. [the operative word in 37-501 is 'knowingly' ]. See the statutory wording (attached): 41-853. State fossil Petrified wood, or araucarioxylon arizonicum, is the official state fossil. 41-841. Archaeological discoveries; definition A. No person, except when acting as a duly authorized agent of an institution or corporation referred to in section 41-842, shall excavate in or upon any historic or prehistoric ruin, burial ground, archaeological or vertebrate paleontological site, or site including fossilized footprints, inscriptions made by human agency, or any other archaeological, paleontological or historical feature, situated on lands owned or controlled by the state of Arizona, or any agency thereof. B. A person shall not collect any archaeological specimen situated on lands owned or controlled by this state or any agency of this state without obtaining a permit authorizing the activity as provided under section 41-842. For the purpose of this subsection, "archaeological specimen" means any item resulting from past human life or activities which is at least one hundred years old including petroglyphs, pictographs, paintings, pottery, tools, ornaments, jewelry, textiles, ceremonial objects, weapons, armaments, vessels, ships, vehicles and human skeletal remains. Archaeological specimen does not include arrowheads, coins or bottles. 37-501. Trespass on state lands; classification A person is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor who: 1. Knowingly commits a trespass upon state lands, either by cutting down or destroying timber or wood standing or growing thereon, by carrying away timber or wood therefrom, by mowing, cutting, or removing hay or grass thereon or therefrom, or by grazing livestock thereon, unless he has a lease or sublease approved by the department for the area being grazed. 2. Knowingly extracts or removes oil, gas, coal, mineral, earth, rock, fertilizer or fossils of any kind or description therefrom. 3. Knowingly without right injures or removes any building, fence or improvements on state lands, or unlawfully occupies, plows or cultivates any of the lands. 4. With criminal negligence exposes growing trees, shrubs or undergrowth standing on state lands to danger or destruction by fire.