In what sounds like a cruel twist on an ancient fable, Maine Audubon is seeking the return of a stuffed hare and turtle that it uses for educational purposes.
The snowshoe hare and pond turtle, each preserved by a taxidermist and mounted in a Plexiglas box, as well as a red fox pelt, were stolen from an Audubon instructor's locked vehicle last weekend while it was in a Portland parking garage.
Eric Topper, Audubon's education director, tells the Portland Press Herald the items are part of the organization's legacy.
They're part of a state-licensed, 130-piece collection of wildlife specimens that are considered difficult to replace and critical to education programs offered by Audubon and teachers across Maine.
Topper says the theft has left "a big hole" in the collection.