Federal Python Ban Bill is AWAKE--CALL NOW

Discussion in 'Reptile Law & Legislation' started by WingedWolf, Feb 27, 2012.

  1. WingedWolf

    WingedWolf Member

    For those unaware, there have been some Federal bills lying around that attempt to circumvent the normal procedures for adding species to the Lacey Act. One of them has just been 'reawakened', and anyone who wants to retain the right to freely transport boa constrictors, green anacondas, or reticulated pythons is in danger of losing that right. Boas are one of the most popular pet constrictors, and millions own them. Stymied by the need to meet the Information Quality Act if impacts exceed 10 million dollars, the FWS added only 4 species to the Lacey Act (Burmese, yellow anaconda, and both African Rock Pythons). This bill sidesteps the entire requirement for scientific evidence or justification.

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    RED ALERT: HR511 Stop Python BAN NOW!

    HR 511, a bill to amend title 18, United States Code, to prohibit the importation of various injurious species of constrictor snakes; Indian python, Python molurus, including the Burmese python, Python molurus bivittatus; reticulated python, Broghammerus reticulatus; Northern African python,Python sebae; Southern African python, Python natalensis; Boa constrictor; yellow anaconda, Eunectes notaeus; DeSchauensee’s anaconda, Eunectes deschauenseei; green anaconda, Eunectes murinus; and the Beni anaconda, Eunectes beniensis, in the US House of Representatives, was introduced January 26, 2011 by Congressman Tom Rooney (R-FL) .

    Congressman Rooney has taken action to move HR 511! This bill seeks to add 9 constricting snakes to the Injurious Wildlife List of the Lacey Act. HR 511 has been scheduled for a Markup Hearing before the US House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday February 28, 2012 at 10:00 AM EST.

    http://judiciary.house.gov/hearings/markups112.html

    >>There is very little time to voice opposition to this bill that could devistate the Reptile Community. Please participate in the USARK Call In Campaign TODAY!<<

    PHONE CAMPAIGN:

    Talking Points:

    • Will destroy thousands of jobs and small family businesses; $104 million annual economic impact.
    • Criminalize the actions of over 1 million American Citizens; Lacey Act felons.
    • Federal action to address a localized problem in South Florida is unnecessary; the State of Florida and US Fish & Wildlife have already taken draconian measures.
    • Underlying science has been criticized by scientists from around the world.
    • Creates a massive animal welfare problem, potentially displacing millions of animals.

    Key Members of House Judiciary Committee:

    Lamar Smith (R-TX)- 202-225-4236
    Sensenbrenner (R-WI)- 202-225-5101
    Coble (R-NC)- 202-225-3065
    Issa (R-CA)- 202-225-3906
    Gohmert (R-TX)- 202-225-3035
    Chaffetz (R-UT)- 202-225-7751
    Gowdy (R-SC)- 202-225-6030
    Poe (R-TX)- 202-225-6565
    Goodlatte (R-VA)- 202-225-5431

    DO IT NOW!!!
     
  2. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    I want to emphasize that everyone must call TODAY!!!
     
  3. Reid

    Reid Banned

    -begins calling-
     
  4. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    To the top.

    Due to the short time window - I want to add, that you should make an effort to call even if you do not own the species in question. This is a threat to our hobby; what do you think will be targeted next if they can get their foot in the door on this?
     
  5. mr_andrew

    mr_andrew Member

    Would it matter if I'm not in the states? As in, would they care what I think on the matter?
     
    Cookie17 likes this.
  6. Cookie17

    Cookie17 HOTM Winner June

    I think this whole ban on species is extremely ridiculous! they have NO scientific evidence! more people are killed by allergies to peanuts each year than by snakes! What, are they gonna ban peanuts too? And it is just enormously stupid that they don't even have to PROVIDE scientific evidence! what's the point of us having the right to own animals when it is now being taken away by IDIOTS who think they know everything about snakes (and who aren't even scientists) when in fact, they know ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!
    ~end rant~
     
    Shanna66 likes this.
  7. reptile boy

    reptile boy New Member

    what number?
     
  8. WingedWolf

    WingedWolf Member

    The bill was passed to the House, and will be up for a vote--please contact your representatives now. Those own any reptile, or support pet ownership, this means you. This bill will affect all owners of reptiles, but particularly (of course) those who own boa constrictors of ALL subspecies. (red-tail boas, etc). Boas are one of the most popular constrictor species in the pet trade, and there are millions of them being kept all across the country.

    If this bill passes, and you own a boa, you will be guilty of a felony if you take your animal with you when you move to a different State.
     
  9. StikyPaws312

    StikyPaws312 Moderator Staff Member

    This is insane... Is there any other way to contact them? (I called yesterday) Emails? Letters? Petitions to sign?
     
  10. Cookie17

    Cookie17 HOTM Winner June

    if we were to move states, could we contact the state authorities that we are moving to and get a permit to bring it across state lines?
     
  11. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    I'd rather not have to think about it. I refuse to see this pass.

    If I opted to do work (i.e. work for the government or military) that required me to move, and I currently own a Boa, I would become a felon. I would have to choose between owning the Boa that I may have had for years, or my job that is forcing me to move to another state. The consequences of this ban are exponential - there is absolutely NO reason why any of these animals should be added to the Lacey Act.
     
    Shanna66 and Cookie17 like this.
  12. Cookie17

    Cookie17 HOTM Winner June

    For those of you who are oblivious to what's been going on in the reptile world...
    Us reptile lovers have been fighting a battle to stop the US government from passing a bill banning several species of snake, including Burmese pythons and boa constrictors. The group of people responsible for creating this group of laws are NOT scientists and have no scientific proof of the claims they are making. They claim that certain species of snakes (nine so far) are a threat to wildlife and humans if they escape. The fact is that very few snakes can survive outside of their natural habitat. There are species that, if they escape, (like the Burmese pythons) can survive in the wilderness of Florida, thereby becoming an invasive species. But it's not a matter of them escaping, it's a matter of stupid ow
    ners (and natural disasters) not realizing that the snake can reach quite large sizes, buying it, becoming overwhelmed, and releasing the snake. Many of the Burmese pythons escaped from the facility destroyed in a hurricane 20 years ago have had time to breed and THIS is what the government needed to get under control.
    The people that support this bill claim that snakes are dangerous animals. The truth is that more people die from peanut allergies each year than from snake bites.
    If they continue to pass bills on what species of snakes are banned, they will eventually ban all snakes from being transported over state lines. After they pass a ban on all snakes, they will move to ban all reptiles, and eventually all pets including dogs, cats, horses, rabbits, and more.
    If you want your rights taken away, then go ahead and support this bill. If you like your right to own any animal you want, then contact your local senator and tell him your concerns about bill H.R. 511.
    I believe that to own any animal is a right; I also believe that for some species, such as the venomous snakes, a license/permit should be required to own. But to ban all snakes without any scientific proof is out of line and uncalled for.
    The ban of all snakes affects MANY businesses and can affect and destroy many peoples' way of living. The economy will plummet even farther.
     
  13. WingedWolf

    WingedWolf Member

    No. You're not a zoo, an educational institution, or scientific research institution, so they will NOT grant you a permit to transport.
     
  14. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    Cammy and StikyPaws312 like this.
  15. StikyPaws312

    StikyPaws312 Moderator Staff Member

    Ok so it's on to the next step, as long as it's not a law yet we still have a chance to do something once it's on the docket again (at hearing again). I wonder if USARK can start 1 main petition.... I know they mentioned about how many people want to start a petition and how petitions don't really do much.... but it would be something to maybe "keep the fire alive" and maybe be able to email all the people who signed when the issue is next at the hearing stage....
     
  16. David Friant

    David Friant New Member

    The way I read the bill it is dealing with imports.Since the herp community can't police itself and the (edited to: irresponsible people) released large snakes in the Glades and they are ruining the ecosystem in Fla. I find the mass sales of HOT snakes just as dangerous and if these irresponseable snake keepers start releasing these HOT Snakes, we will be in big trouble.!! I've traveled the Amazon(on reptile expedtions) and have seen first hand the danger these snakes can do,even in the most remote areas.
    I'm really on the fence on this issue.Since the mass release of snakes that got to big to handel,it proves that to many snake keepers can't be trusted to act responeable!!
    I recently had to get rid of my collection and found homes for adult Rhino Iguanas,jungle and carpet pythons ,lg. bull snakes,etc. I had large collection and had to place due to health issues where i could'nt care for them properly.It broke my heart but releaseing any was not an option!! Something MUST BE DONE to punish people that release any HERPS!!
     
  17. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    The bill will add the animals to the Lacey Act - which means that importation of the animals or their eggs, AND interstate trade of the animals will be illegal (in a nutshell). It will be a felony to move from state to state with one of these animals, even if you have owned it for years.

    There has been substantial research by USARK on these species, and particularly the burmese python as to its ability to thrive in different areas of the country. The fact is, they cannot (including bordering states) This is an issue with Florida only, and burms have been established in the Everglades for over 20yrs now. Much of this is believed to be at fault by a hurricane (Hurrican Andrew, specifically) that destroyed a facilities housing the snakes, an accident by natural causes. Though irresponsible keepers could also be partly to blame in adding to it.

    HOTS/Venomous Reptiles require permits to obtain in most states (generally state laws dicate hots) - this is something that prevents the unthinking majority from obtaining them.

    Why should a centralized problem in Southern Florida have to affect all of us? Millions of us in the other states? Adding these animals to the Lacey Act will do NOTHING to solve problems in Floirda. This is issue is entirely based on faux evidence and pushing by interests groups for $$$...thats it.

    Microchipping animals in FLORIDA and organizing other means to solve the problem in the Everglades is something that FLorida should deal with on their own, and will be a proactive approach to resolving the issue. This 'Python Ban' is not the solution... in fact, it may make things WORSE. What happens when keepers must give up their animals because they become a felon if they move but cannot find homes for their pets? What happens if there is a medical emergency and the owner must find a new home for their pet, but are are restricted to only finding someone local in state? I foresee a greater number of neglected herps, and even released animals as a result of this bill.

    USARK's archive is full of excellent articles and information on research that has disproved any footing that this bill has:
    http://www.usark.org/archive.php

    I also feel that ignorance and fear of snakes is a driving force behind this ban by the public. Dangerous my rear end - if we are concerned about the safety of the all mighty human being then apparently dogs (man's best friend) should be banned as pets, as exponetntially more people are killed by and hospitalized by these animals annually than by captive reptiles (salmonella infection included).
     
    Cammy, Cookie17 and StikyPaws312 like this.
  18. StikyPaws312

    StikyPaws312 Moderator Staff Member

    David if you think that people who release their herps into the wild should be punished why are you supporting this bill? This bill will do ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to people releasing their animals, it only will hurt people trying to move their animals over state lines and hurt people who are trying to legitimately and properly care for their animals responsibly. In fact, this bill (if it passes) will probably cause MORE animals to be let into the wild because owners will not have any other choices. The bill has no provisions for punishing anyone dropping their own herp off in their own state.... in the wild.
     
    Cammy likes this.
  19. JEFFREH

    JEFFREH Administrator Staff Member

    Are you suggesting that we make all responsible herp lovers suffer because of a few bad eggs?

    There are much simpler strategies that can be employed to help prevent this than an extreme ban that will affect the livlihoods, hobbies, and lives of millions of people and reptiles across the entire nation.
     
    Cammy likes this.
  20. David Friant

    David Friant New Member

    Well Jeffreh, I've watched people buy HOTS in Hamberg,Pa. buy vipers and Bushmasters of all things with no permit check. I never said I support this bill. I do support the idea of some control is of imports is a nessary evil.
    I called a couple weeks ago when it was still in committee.
    I do agree with you about the planned bans.As a whole the whole herp import biz has done a terrible job of control!! Since we as a community have done so POORLY maybe we need to form an special interest group to infuence laws? With so much money changing hands in the Reptile Biz , some it should go towards controling the more important projects of limits of some kind.To me one of the more imporant is Conservation,but that's just my opinion. Also more control of imports so not so many die due to bad import conditions.
    Since as a whole we can't exercise self-control, we end up making the Gov. step in and try to do it for US.
    If we don't do it ,someone who is totallaly outside the herp collective will do the contoling for US.
     

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