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WARNING!!! Senate Action on December 3rd May Ban Ownership of All Pythons

Once again we need to ask your help in opposing a poorly-researched effort to limit the responsible ownership of any and all pythons, including harmless species and those which have benefitted from the captive breeding efforts of hobbyists.

Senate Bill 373, which is up for consideration on this Thursday, December 3, 2009, seeks to prohibit the ownership of all snakes within the genus Python by classifying them as “injurious wildlife” under the Lacey Act.  The lack of foresight and scientific research that resulted in ball pythons being considered to be equally threatening to the environment as Burmese pythons is obvious.

In July of this year, the overwhelming response of reptile owners and the pet industry was instrumental in limiting the scope of a similar bill, HR 2811, to Burmese and African rock pythons only.  Our experience with that bill shows very clearly that our involvement in government action is critical, and that the system does work – but only if we participate in a timely manner.

It is critical that we act right now, as the Senate vote on this bill will be taken in 2 days – December 3, 2009.

The Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council has set up a simple method for you to register your opinion with the Senate here.  You can read more about the scope of the bill there as well.  Please take action now – we changed the future of our hobby and, in many cases, our professions, in July, and we can again.

For more valuable information concerning reptile hobbyists, you can also visit the US Association of Reptile Keepers (USARK).


About Frank Indiviglio

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Being born with a deep interest in animals might seem unfortunate for a native Bronxite , but my family encouraged my interest and the menagerie that sprung from it. Jobs with pet stores and importers had me caring for a fantastic assortment of reptiles and amphibians. After a detour as a lawyer, I was hired as a Bronx Zoo animal keeper and was soon caring for gharials, goliath frogs, king cobras and everything in-between. Research has taken me in pursuit of anacondas, Orinoco crocodiles and other animals in locales ranging from Venezuela’s llanos to Tortuguero’s beaches. Now, after 20+ years with the Bronx Zoo, I am a consultant for several zoos and museums. I have spent time in Japan, and often exchange ideas with zoologists there. I have written books on salamanders, geckos and other “herps”, discussed reptile-keeping on television and presented papers at conferences. A Master’s Degree in biology has led to teaching opportunities. My work puts me in contact with thousands of hobbyists keeping an array of pets. Without fail, I have learned much from them and hope, dear readers, that you will be generous in sharing your thoughts on this blog and web site. For a complete biography of my experience click here.
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