Salamander Bsal and Potential Import Ban

As has been mentioned in previous USARK newsletters, Salamander chytrid fungus, or Bsal, has been a topic of concern for several months. We need preliminary data on the domestic salamander trade. All U.S. breeders and businesses dealing with salamanders (native and non-native species), please send an email to Contact@USARK.org with the subject line "Salamanders." We'll send you a simple form to complete. All data provided will be compiled and privileged, and business names and sources will remain anonymous.

Also, please let us know if you are willing to help develop and/or participate in any quarantine/treatment/testing protocols. We especially need screening/swab tests done for terrestrial species and can provide contact information and details. Protocol and practices will be essential for establishing a clean trade of salamanders.

Since an integrated approach to conservation issues and maintaining ecological integrity are vital to USARK's mission, we are concerned with the chytrid threat and will certainly work to prevent harm to native wildlife and captive populations. If you missed it, please read the USARK newsletter about Bsal at the bottom of this newsletter or at www.us4.campaign-archive1.com/?u=d7e8c81109173978c4240862c&id=2a51d02304.

More on Salamander Import Ban

Below is a posting from the most recent Unified Agenda by the Department of the Interior and FWS regarding salamander chytrid fungus, Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans (Bsal or Bs). The entry suggest that some species of salamanders may be listed as injurious, thus making importation into the U.S. illegal. If a clean trade can be established, this import ban could be lifted.

The Unified Agenda publishes significant regulatory actions that agencies expect to tackle. Federal agencies are required to publish agendas of regulatory and deregulatory activities.

Title: Injurious Wildlife Species; Listing Salamanders Due to Risk of Salamander Chytrid Fungus

Abstract: We will evaluate the Order Caudata to determine which salamander species should be listed as injurious to prevent the risk of introduction into the United States of Batrachochytrium salamandrivorans [Bsal], a fungus that causes fatal infections in European salamanders. The fungus affects only salamanders and is not yet known to be found in the United States.

Clark County, Nevada Animal Ordinance Alert

Below is a link with an agenda for a meeting of the Clark County Animal Advisory Committee. The meeting is June 25 and several matters will be discussed, including number of animals allowed to be kept at one residence. As we have seen, reptiles, amphibians, other exotics, small farm animals (i.e. chickens) and even fish are sometimes lumped into the mix when amendments are made to ordinances supposedly aimed at dog and cat owners.

It is important to attend or contact officials prior to the meeting to let them know your concerns. The proposed topics and other information can be found at www.clarkcountynv.gov/Depts/admin_services/animalcontrol/Documents/AGENDA%206-25-2015.pdf.

REMEMBER: When attending meetings, sending emails, making phone calls, or interacting with officials at any time, we must be civil and professional. Acting otherwise hurts our cause. Animal rights activists are radical and often lose favor with legislators. Don't let that happen to us.

Potential ALERT: Beaufort County, South Carolina

While this seems to be a maneuver to prevent a new exotic animal and big cat facility from moving into the county, it could escalate quickly to a ban on reptiles and other other exotic animals, too. Without work from local residents, this will not be a legitimate animal welfare ordinance.

Area residents should contact their local officials and engage in this process. At this time, let officials know that there is a large exotic animal community and request to work on the language for any proposed ordinance. They likely simply need to be educated. Remember to be professional and civil at all times!

It seems that officials are being fed public safety scare propaganda and could have been provided with false statistics and other animal rights misinformation. Don't let animal rights groups write our laws!

Read an article about this issue at www.blufftontoday.com/bluffton-news/2015-06-09/beaufort-county-could-crack-down-exotic-animals#.VXc2CM9VhBc.

Contact information for officials can be found at www.bcgov.net/departments/Administrative/beaufort-county-council/council-members/index.php.

Donate to the USARK Legal Defense Fund

Information for making donations online and via check/money order can be found at www.usark.org/reptile-defense-fund-2/. You can make one-time, weekly, monthly or annual donations. You can also include a message that will be posted on the Legal Defense Fund Donor Wall at www.usark.org/usark-announcement/reptile-defense-donor-wall/ for all to see. You can even choose to make your donation or donation amount anonymous. Thanks for your support as we battle FWS to restore the freedoms of the Reptile Nation.

Join RAACA 2.0 Today!

There is a new anytime RAACA! Check out the format for listing auctions to benefit USARK via RAACA USARK Auctions at www.facebook.com/groups/1623588901209232/. These auctions will allow donations at any time and not just during fundraiser events. Anyone can bid, donate and support the Reptile Nation!

The new RAACA USARK Auctions have raised over $2,600. Thank you, RAACA, Jordan, Tammy, Houssam, Christine, donors and all the admins in this group!

Article written by USARK