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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 2:16 am 
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Journeyman Hunter
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http://usark.org/press-releases/action- ... injurious/
http://usark.org/action-alert/usfws-cat ... clusion-2/

It's been a long while since I've posted, yet I've lurked... and lurked...
Despite that I decided it was about time I emerged and said something, being that my real-life pets were in danger of being thrown into the Lacey Act, which would make me a felon if I crossed state lines with them if they were to be placed on that list. The Humane Society of the United States, an anti-pet group that has been combating USARK for a few years now has reared its head again to try and place the boa constrictor (including all subspecies) and the reticulated python onto the list that would include them into the Lacey Act. They will no longer be able to be imported, or transported across state lines in any manner unless they are being exported from the United States. USARK addresses this very well.

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Anti-pet groups are being allowed to force their agenda upon all Americans. Constrictor snakes have been held as pets for over 50 years and there is no evidence to support injurious listing.

The proposal to list these snakes under the federal Lacey Act is opposed by a wide group of stakeholders, including the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), the Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies (AFWA), the pet industry, and the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy, to name a few. The proposal was highlighted in a House Oversight and Government Reform hearing as federal overreach and at a House Natural Resources Committee hearing which featured National Geographic’s resident herpetologist in opposition to the listing.

The Boa constrictor is by far the most commonly held and most economically important large constrictor, accounting for the majority of adverse economic consequences from a listing. USFWS, however, failed to adequately characterize the industry’s scope or recognize the negative economic impacts of this first-time listing of a species widely held as pets.

This rule is an unnecessary federal intrusion into state wildlife management and misuse of the Lacey Act. Listing of these snakes will create felons out of tens of thousands of pet owners, hobbyists and collectors and will destroy small businesses across the country in states where there is zero likelihood of captive-bred snakes establishing themselves in the wild.

A ban on the import and interstate commerce of the remaining five species will have a devastating economic impact. There is absolutely no evidence showing these species to be a threat to public safety and no science to support the fact that these species can become injurious throughout the United States. The only potentially habitable climate lies in extreme southern Florida and the issue has been addressed locally by the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.


Usually, I'm against National Geographic as they get most of their views from bashing constrictors but to see them lending a helping hand really puts them in a new light for me. Either way, if you own ANY SORT OF ANIMAL it will be in your benefit to oppose the bill designed to give the enemies of our pets the means of adding whichever species they like to the Lacey Act, for any reason. This includes hamsters if they should as much as deem them "injurious" to our nation's environment- without any scientific backing at all. I guess I've gotten my point across well enough. Please, help us out folks. They won't stop with reptiles.

Thanks,
NanoTrev
aka Trevor


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 2:32 am 
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I could understand this if it were just no importing into the swampy states like Florida where boa pets getting loose/released is a problem for the native wildlife. But all the rest is just crap. These are probably the same crotchety old people who petition for all the houses on the block to be white because they don't like the blue you're using. :mrgreen:

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:21 am 
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Sure seems like it sometimes. About the only reasoning they have left once you take away everything else is "We don't like snakes... because we don't like snakes." Let alone any other reptile. Now I should mention that the Burmese pythons in South Florida are restricted to two counties because there's a very small portion of suitable environment they like. If you were to release some in Northern Florida, they'll die from respiratory illness because it's too cold for them yet the division of the USGS (United State Geological Survey) which documented how far they could spread estimated that they could spread to a third of the US. Universities around the country dispute these finds and OH! It gets even better...

The paper was never peer reviewed before it was circulated.


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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:32 am 
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I have a question, do you need a license to have a snake in America? I just ask cause in Australia we do (and lizards as well) which have catagories. You have to prove you can look after them etc which seems very sensible to me.

I don't think we are restricted where we take them here as most are native snakes anyway. I don't understand American agriculture but this does sound extreme especially if the snakes are already pets in these areas anyway!

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Unread postPosted: Fri Jul 26, 2013 4:04 am 
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Castile wrote:
I have a question, do you need a license to have a snake in America? I just ask cause in Australia we do (and lizards as well) which have catagories. You have to prove you can look after them etc which seems very sensible to me.

I don't think we are restricted where we take them here as most are native snakes anyway. I don't understand American agriculture but this does sound extreme especially if the snakes are already pets in these areas anyway!


No, but it would be a very easy way to keep track of who has what, and it's a system that's coming into place in Florida for Burmese pythons and other invasive species. Guess what. You can still have them! However, you need a permit, which hardly costs anything, and you need to prove you can look after them. Now, what about boa constrictors here in Nebraska? There's no way they could live in most of the US. There's no way most exotic constrictors can live in much of the continental US in general. Oie!

Also, if you haven't already please add your voice and follow the instructions listed in those links (if you live in the US). I'm actually going to call my congressman in the morning.


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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 6:08 pm 
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As a reptile owner /breeder since 1993 .................... this has been a LONG TIME coming. It's sad. But really no one to blame but poor owners. It's easy to convince a fish and wildlife inspector for permitting that your a fit owner for a day. That's the truth behind these horrible bills. These snakes DO adapt and could easily live in places you'd think they couldn't. I'm not justifying the bill saying it's "ok" and pass it. I am however giving the other side of the coin to their mindset of why they feel this should be enacted. The other part is south Florida is where ALL IMPORTS COME IN. That's right. Every reptile and amphibian import goes through Florida before anyplace else. The wild invasive reptile population in FL was not created by neglectful owners. Yes no doubts it played a part. But a hurricane rips through a place housing said reptiles and destroys it and boom. Hundreds of loose snakes and lizards. The other side of the coin is that these animals CAN survive in places like Alabama, Georgia, Texas, Oklahoma etc. Just take a look at native reptile species to know that they could survive. Hence they're wanting to ban the transport across state lines. Again. I am in no way agreeing with it but see where they're coming from.
Yes the US desperately needs the tiered licensing system that Australia has when it comes to reptile ownership. It's a shame that it has to come to this but again. I see why it has. When a big name constrictor seller (no I won't say which ones) has no qualms about shipping out a snake that has the potential to reach 6+ feet to some 18 year old with no previous reptile knowledge that is a problem. I'm sorry but it is. I've always felt that way about reptile breeders /sellers and have never agreed with that.

YES they will add species to the Lacey Act. Count on it. Such a shame. But that's the horrible price us good folk are now having to pay for all the bad ones out there.

FYI I've been signing USARK's petitions for years against these bills. Heartbreaking we never win. :(

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Unread postPosted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 10:38 pm 
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Yet, Burmese pythons CAN NOT survive in Northern Florida. The point of their false studies was that they could invade a third of the US. Universities around the country have done their own experiments such as one in South Carolina. As soon as fall hit all ten of the Burmese pythons kept in a two acre pen died in a matter of weeks.

Yet, we have feral dogs and cats everywhere. Those never make headlines because it is not news, and they do far more ecological damage (cats, being the most studied) than most people would think. Don't think they've escaped the eyes of the HSUS either- you should read their article bashing spay and neuter programs.

As for which species they'll add to the Lacey Act? Well, don't throw in the towel so quickly. They got five removed and now HSUS is fighting to have them added in again. Much more disastrous, would be giving the Fish and Wildlife all out control over the Lacey Act, without having to have any evidence or reasoning to add whatever species they like onto the list.


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