You can view the Action Alert with 4 steps on how to support your herp and exotic pet community at www.usark.org/action-alert/usfws-categorical-exclusion-2/.
You can also view additional USARK information and action concerning Cat Ex at www.usark.org/uncategorized/catex-update-and-usark-in-d-c-92413/.
West Virginia SB 371 Action Alert
Please take a couple minutes and let USFWS (United States Fish and Wildlife Service) know your concerns regarding listing 11 non-native species of tarantula under the ESA (Endangered Species Act). This could end the trade of captive bred animals. If you do nothing else, please go to the comments site and say something such as:
“Regardless of ESA listing of one or more species, please provide for the exemption of captive bred animals from the possession and interstate sales regulation.”
Comment at http://www.regulations.gov/#!submitComment;D=FWS-HQ-ES-2013-0107-0001 (Deadline is 2/3/14).
View much more information and a message from Christian Elowsky (President of the American Tarantula Society) at www.usark.org/2014-blog/tarantula-and-exotic-pet-keeper-comments-needed/.
New York A 2869
A2869 has again been referred to the Agriculture Committee (Assembly). The bill was introduced in 2013 and is back in 2014. A2869 will make, “Any person owning, possessing or harboring a wild animal or reptile capable of inflicting bodily harm upon a human being” guilty of a class E felony. This bill is upgrading the penalty from a misdemeanor to a felony. You can contact legislators to let them know this is an unnecessary use of time and money, and a very harsh punishment for someone who may not be aware of this law.
View more information at www.usark.org/2014-blog/2014-new-york-a2869/.
Washington State Residents
Below is a message from Predators of the Heart Sanctuary:
A group in Anacortes, Washington will soon face the same legislation as Ohio. Currently there is a law in the works that will ban all exotics with no grandfathering. This means that without your help dozens, if not more, animals will be without homes. Without homes means that they will inevitably be put down.
New Jersey S381
Donors: Russell Lawson (Green Swamp Herpetological), Alpert's Exotics, Jordan Russell (Breedersource.com), Katie Grabill, Herp Nation, Tom Crutchfield Reptiles, Josh Trout, Treacher’s Creatures, DZB Reptiles (Debra and Jeffrey Poe), Mike Dee, Donny De mars, Loren Morales, Jereme James (America's Finest Balls), Fred Kick (Kicks Balls), Sandy Felker, Ramy Guirguis (Reptile Super Show), Drew Reinhardt (Phoenix Reptile Expo), Bob Ashley/Brian Potter (NARBC: North American Reptile Breeders Conference). Mike Bell, Jason (Protean Terrarium Design), Michelle Verheyden, Myke Clarkson, Prehistoric Pets, Gorgeousgecko.com, Perfect Predators, TortoiseSupply.com, Sticky Tongue Farms, Mad City Reptiles, Alec Feldman, DIYCages.com, Nadilyn Beato - Wildlife Illustrator, Shannon Hammer, Jeff Mintz, Rick Gravely, Erik Veach (Geckotropolis), Bi-Polar Herps and Inverts, Martin Habecker & Jay Fiore, Millipedes And More, Gavin Bowe (In Your Face Exotix), Scott Miller, R&B Reptiles, Ken Foose at Exotic Pets Las Vegas, Mike Torosian, Russ Gurley, PJ LeDorze, California Zoological Supply (Cal Zoo), Maryanne DellaSalla (Steel City Scales), Tics and Balls, Ryan Young, Ben Siegel Reptiles, John Chang, Hardy Reptiles, Winters Reptiles, Jeff Luman Reptiles, Brad Chambers, Carson Phelps, Travis Kuhse, Dan Mulleary (DM Exotics), Matt Buchanan, Jeff Hagen, Rat Trap Reptiles, Jim Jolly & Mike Powell, LLLReptile & Supply, Darrel’s Pet Shop, Dart Frog Connection, Little Critters Pet Shop, Gene @ Paradise Reptiles, Magical Geckos, Jeff Byers, Christine Lopez and Steven Ibbotson, DCM Designer Constrictor Morphs, East Bay Vivarium, James Osborne, Beatrice's Reptiles, Diego Ortiz, Joe Rollo Reptiles - BCI JOE, Joe Schmidt of 3rd Room Reptiles, Joe Ellis, Ritchie Luna (HerpVenue.com), Reunion Reptiles, Josh's Frogs, Salvador Veleta, New England Reptile, Anonymous, Bill Brant - The Gourmet Rodent, Shawn Gray of NightGlow Reptiles, Joseph Saunders, CDP Dogos (Rick), Underground Reptiles, Chinsu Kim La Habra Pets, TSK Supply, Evan Stahl, Justin Guyer, Sam Scālz Fine Art, Yvonne Carpenter, Biological Jewels, Siren Fish & Reptiles, Reptile Ave, Golden Gate Geckos, Salvador Veleta, Angels Exotic Reptiles, Paul Becker and Invertebrates Unlimited, The Chicago Reptile House, Lonnie Cornell, Kevin Smith (North Star Herp), Riverside County Pitbulls, Jeff Wieland, Thomas Photopulos @ K & E Geckos, Thor Gecko, Shawn Heflick Reptiles, Inc., Jon Boone, Buffalo Bill Exotics, Jeff Wilson, Kentucky Reptile Zoo, Crystal Dickneite, Crystal Dickneite, RC Furniture, Kammerflage Kreations, Greathouse Farm, Jason Bartolett, Visionary Exotics, Riley J. Campbell, Kris Haas, Amanda Rose Wanner, Paul White, Ragin' Redtails and Exotics, Bill Galloway, Loxahatchee Herp Hatchery and ShipYourReptiles.com for discounted shipping rates
Windy City Reptiles raised over $1,800 to benefit USARK by holding a raffle fundraiser at Scott Smith's All Animal Expo. Thanks to all involved and WCR!Also, we would like to thank all the other supporters who have held fundraisers to benefit USARK. You are appreciated and you make our fight possible!
NARBC Arlington and Tinley Park: NARBC hits Texas on February 15-16 and Tinley Park, IL March 15-16. NARBC presents some of the premier shows in the country with top vendors and great promoters, Bob Ashley and Brian Potter. Be sure to attend the USARK/PIJAC benefit auctions, held Saturday nights of shows, to protect your rights to keep reptiles and amphibians as pets. NARBC raised over $100,000 to support the pet community and Rico Walder in 2013. Support those that support you. Get all the details at www.NARBC.com.
TXARK Presentation: The TXARK Board of Directors will be holding a public meeting at NARBC Arlington. The talk is scheduled for 3:00 PM on Saturday, February 15. This is a very important meeting for all Texas herpers to attend. TXARK will allow you to protect your rights at the state and local levels. They will also spread awareness of the herp community. Thank you, TXARK Board, for starting this organization!
RAACA Reptile Room Makeover Raffle: Enter for your chance to win $10,000+ in caging from Jeff Ronne (The Boaphile) and support USARK. Only 2500 tickets will be sold. Buy tickets and get details at www.RAACA.net. The drawing is February 22. Winning ticket will be pulled at a LLL Reptile retail location by a random child (not by anyone affiliated to the raffle). Videos will be posted as well.
iHerp's Aaron Florian speaks up about exotic pet (including herps) ownership: http://www.iherp.com/Public/Blog/Detail.aspx?UID=164312
Texas Rattlesnake Festival: This inaugural event will happen March 8-9 in Round Rock, TX. Share and spread the word. This is an educational event and no snakes will be harmed. This needs to be the future of rattlesnake-related events. Help make it a reality!
"Our purpose and goal is to educate others of the beauty and values of these animals in hopes that people will develop a greater appreciation and respect for them. We hope to reduce or end the needless slaughter of of an animal that is gravely misunderstood. All animals on display at this event will be from private collections. In order to ensure no animals are captured for this event, no animals will be brought into the show without making prior arrangements with the show staff." - TRF
OKC Elite Reptile Show: After a great first show, the second OKC Elite show hits Oklahoma City on May 3-4. More information will be posted at https://www.facebook.com/events/254930164657115/?fref=ts.
National Reptile & Amphibian Advisory Council (NRAAC) Law Symposium: March 7-9, 2014 in Washington, D.C. Registration is free but limited to the first 200 registrants. The event will include three days of panels, workshops, breakout sessions and talks with the goal of bringing all parties interested in reptiles, amphibians and the law to the table. Discussion will be focused on changes and issues with current and proposed herp laws and regulations at the local, state, federal and international levels. Get the details at http://www.nraac.org/symposium2014.html.
This is the RAACA crew doing an amazing job supporting the herp community. Thank you, RAACA!
Pictured: back row left to right: Emily Rose Cordell, Myke Clarkson, Tammy Russell, Jordan Russell, Devon Massyn, Erick Briggs; front row left to right: Cameron Lamb, Houssam Istanbouli, Erin Briggs; not pictured: Linda Davison and Rebecca Clarkson
Click the photo for details. Only 2500 tickets will be sold! Deadline is February 21.
Click the photo or visit www.facebook.com/prehistoricpets to follow the Prehistoric Pets fundraisers to benefit USARK.