Florida bill would ban 9 reptile species, including iguanas, as pets - FaunaClassifieds
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Herps In The News Local or national articles where reptiles or amphibians have made it into the news media. Please cite sources.

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Old 02-28-2020, 04:28 PM   #1
JColt
Florida bill would ban 9 reptile species, including iguanas, as pets

OLDSMAR, Fla. - Florida lawmakers want to crack down on invasive animals, and are considering banning owning, selling and breeding at least nine different reptile species. Those against the proposal say it could kill a multi-million-dollar industry in the state.

"Bearded dragons, leopard geckos, chameleons, tortoises are very popular these days," said Bob Potts, owner of the Herp Hobby Shop Reptile Breeding Center.

The shop has been open in Oldsmar for close to 30 years, selling captive-bred reptiles to the public.

Potts does not carry many non-native species, but he says he is still concerned about proposed legislation that could ban ownership, breeding and selling of some exotic lizards and snakes.

Senate Bill 1414 focuses on fish and wildlife activities. Part of it would increase annual free fishing days across the state, while another section takes aim at more than nine reptile species, including the green iguana and the tegu lizard.

Most of the animals on the list currently require a conditional permit, but the proposal would prohibit them all unless the animals are being used for educational, research, or eradication and control purposes.


Itís something the reptile industry in the state strongly opposes.

"I think itís gonna be a nightmare for FWC to tell people they can't have a pet iguana when they live in their backyard,Ē said Eugene Bessette, the Florida legislative affairs director for the U.S. Association of Reptile Keepers.

He says the bill on the table is frustrating, especially since Florida contributes so much to the reptile pet trade locally and selling across the country.

"We have a good strong industry, I mean, you know, we're close to $200-million a year to the state of Florida, a couple million homes,Ē Bessette said.

The legislation does include language that grandfathers in anyone already breeding and selling iguanas and tegus, but the lizards can only be sold outside of Florida.

Even with the exception, there is concern the bill could force specialized and large-scale breeders out of business.

"We donít want to put anyone out of business, we want to work together to remove these animals," added Bessette.

https://www.fox13news.com/news/flori...guanas-as-pets
 
Old 03-02-2020, 12:33 PM   #2
CFexotics
I went to the senate meeting three weeks ago and spoke well tried to speak they cut me at 20 seconds in. They do not want to talk about the impact on Florida's economy this will have. They believe it will only be the pet trade not realizing what all the money keeps ,breeders and dealers spend on supplies from other industries to support these animals. Everything from Grocery, produce ,Utilities "electric ,water etc , to hardware for custom cage builds not counting the logistics in transport and other items. HSUS has bought a few members of the senate and it showed
 
Old 03-04-2020, 09:42 AM   #3
nickolasanastasiou
Yes. The amendments currently filed as of this post are, in my opinion, inadequate and only serve to temporarily* grant reprieve to a fraction of larger breeders. The language of the current iteration hurts more keepers than meets the eye, too, and sneaks an entire corner of the industry's neck into a noose.

*Any lapse in renewal on grandfathering provisions, including some kind of "clerical error" or declination, would invalidate all future chance for a given business in operation to regain status.

This will have zero positive environmental impact. It will harm livelihoods, though.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 09:57 AM   #4
CFexotics
The wording is what is really messed up the amendment last night filed.
Delete lines 91-98 and insert new
2020, and documentation of green iguanas or tegu lizards on his or hers or its 2019 application , the commission may grandfather that person ,firm , or corporation so as to allow to continue. Etc

Notice the part I underlined the commission may

May is the choice word that means they will pick if you are or not allowed .
 
Old 03-04-2020, 11:18 AM   #5
bcr229
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickolasanastasiou View Post
*Any lapse in renewal on grandfathering provisions, including some kind of "clerical error" or declination, would invalidate all future chance for a given business in operation to regain status.
That's nuts. Even the IRS and ATF, which are not known for being easy to deal with, have processes in place to handle clerical errors without penalty to the taxpayer.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 01:08 PM   #6
Lucille
"We have a good strong industry, I mean, you know, we're close to $200-million a year to the state of Florida, a couple million homes,” Bessette said."

The jaded part of me wonders whether this is actually a shakedown by Florida of a bunch of admittedly (see above) lucrative businesses, and that some in the legislature are trying to see whether they can shake the trees and have dollar bills instead of iguanas fall out. Typically lobbying activities involve large amounts of cash.

As a comparison, rats and rodents in general do a lot of harm in agricultural states, but some people keep them as pets. But unlike the reptile pet industry in Florida, the rat pet industry is small and not very affluent and no one seems to be trying to stop people from keeping rats as pets. A rat industry shakedown might net pennies, but a reptile business shakedown could translate into very large bribes as the businesses deal with the legislators.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 01:15 PM   #7
nickolasanastasiou
Possibly.

Rumors circulate about HSUS influence driving this.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 02:26 PM   #8
CFexotics
Those Rumors . food for thought 3 bills all being pushed at the same time with basically the same out come 3 different representatives and area's of Florida pushing for this. Along with members of FWC pushing it.Someone is buying off the right people in office. The bad part is the impact will be felt not only in the reptile industry and not only in Florida.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 03:57 PM   #9
JColt
Quote:
Lucille
As a comparison, rats and rodents in general do a lot of harm in agricultural states, but some people keep them as pets. But unlike the reptile pet industry in Florida, the rat pet industry is small and not very affluent and no one seems to be trying to stop people from keeping rats as pets.
According to an 2005 FWC study, there are at least 5.3 million feral and free-ranging cats in the state of Florida that annually kill nearly 120 million small mammals and 30 million birds. Who knows how many native reptiles they kill. Yet they allow Neuter and release.
 
Old 03-04-2020, 03:59 PM   #10
JColt
Double post
 

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