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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 07-05-2019, 01:09 PM   #11
I'll start this by saying the numbers involved don't really concern me. For the most part I am of the mindset that I don't care how many animals a person has if he is keeping them in humane and proper conditions and he is not infringing on anyone else's rights (I really don't like that word) such as putting them in danger or bad smells etc.

However, in this case, as much as some people may want to defend this guy and make the government out to be the bad guy on this nothing good can come from it for any of us. Defending him makes the rest of us look almost as bad as his own actions did. Not only did this guy have a lot of animals, which most people won't understand, he had illegal animals. Not just illegal in the form of potentially dangerous (the cobras) which, while not for me, I am not opposed to if proper precautions are taken, but illegal in the form of endangered.

The majority of the non reptile keeping public does not understand why we do this anyway (keep reptiles in general not THIS as in what this guy did) so when they see things like this it only strengthens their opinions against us. I highly doubt any non reptile enthusiast, and this includes the lawmakers, will look at this and come away with a better understanding of our hobby or a deeper appreciation for our passion. To them its just another crazy wacko keeping endangered and potentially dangerous animals that we have no business keeping in the first place even if they were not endangered or dangerous.

The law about not being able to keep wild animals is one of those purposefully vague laws that will not come into play for the vast majority of people who do keep wild animals. Its in place for guys like this. Guys who they think are going beyond the limits of realistic pet keeping. They know people have wild animals and they probably know specifically a lot of them who do but they don't care about the ones who are doing it realistically and properly. I used to know a few people who were in charge of enforcing the laws about size limits on snakes in a town near me. They told me they knew of people who had snakes larger than were allowed but until and unless there was a problem they were not going to do anything about it. One of the reasons for these laws is to try to at least limit what some people attempt to keep. Without such laws it can be very difficult to do anything about those who are not entirely on the up and up. Unfortunately its also a catch all law that allows them to be real pricks if they want to. To me that is the scary part of it. Today my 12 foot Burm is no problem tomorrow someone gets a wild hair up their *&^ and they come knocking on my door.

I have no sympathy for the person in this case. I have no idea who he is and I had never heard of him before. With that many animals though I am reasonably certain that he knew he was breaking several laws. I don't care if you agree with the laws or not, if you know you are breaking them you need to be prepared to face the consequences. I'm guessing if the cobras and endangered animals had not been part of the equation it would not have been a big deal even though he was still breaking the "keeping wild animals" law. With that many animals, especially the spotted turtles, this guy should not be considered a conservationist. I don't know all the details of what he planned on doing with all of them or the ones that would hatch but I doubt anything other than selling them for profit was a motive.
Old 07-05-2019, 01:40 PM   #12
Very well stated.
Old 03-19-2020, 11:09 AM   #13
" Though the season is open for taking snapping turtles, they may not be possessed live."

Kill as many snapping turtles as you want, but we'll fine you $500 for every live one we catch you with.

Yes, that's the law in New York.

Pennsylvania is the same with Timber rattlesnakes. Permits issued to kill but fines and prison for keeping them alive as pets.
Old 03-19-2020, 11:12 AM   #14
That is seriously wrong.
Old 03-24-2020, 06:48 PM   #15
Looking this up I see about a week later they added charges of having an alligator. Anyone know outcome of original story?

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