'Can I purchase a Burmese python?' and other good questions answered this weekend
Wednesday, August 18, 2010
Media contact: Joy Hill, 352-258-3426
A new statute concerning certain nonnative reptiles
in Florida went into effect July 1, and new regulations concerning
these same species will go into effect Aug. 23. The Florida Fish
and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) wants to help people
understand these new rules at a perfect venue: the National Reptile
Breeders Expo in Daytona Beach, Aug. 20-22.
At the expo, FWC law enforcement officers and rules
experts will be educating exhibitors and attendees about the new
statute and regulations regarding reptiles of concern, and
conditional snakes and lizards.
Since July 1, 2008, the FWC has categorized five
large constrictor snakes and one lizard as reptiles of concern, and
required anyone possessing them to hold a reptile of concern
permit. However, effective Aug. 23, species formally classified as
reptiles of concern are now listed as conditional species.
The new conditional snake and lizard species are
Burmese or Indian python, northern African python, southern African
python, amethystine python, reticulated python, scrub python, green
anaconda and the Nile monitor lizard. Conditional species are
not allowed for personal possession, and as of July 1, people may
no longer acquire these animals as personal pets in Florida.
However, people who owned a former reptile of concern, and had it
properly licensed as of July 1, may keep their pet for the
remainder of the animal's life, but they must maintain their annual
reptile of concern license for that pet.
Conditional species, including the new conditional
snakes and lizards, may only be acquired and possessed by dealers,
breeders or exhibitors for commercial purposes. A conditional
species permit is required to import, possess and transport these
animals. At the reptile expo Aug. 20-22, people can look at Burmese
pythons on display, but they can't be purchased as pets.
For more information on these new rules, including
amnesty and adoption options for these animals, go to