Captive Wildlife Penalties

Penalties

Level 1

For violations of statutes or rules pertaining to:

  • Free permits or authorizations to possess Captive Wildlife.
  • Filing of reports or documents by anyone licensed to possess Captive Wildlife.
  • Failure to renew Captive Wildlife permits requiring a fee, when the permit is expired for less than one year.

Penalty 

  • First offense - Non-criminal infraction; fine of $50 plus the cost of the permit.
  • Second offense - Non-criminal infraction; fine of $250 plus the cost of the permit.
  • Opting for a civil hearing for the violation may increase the maximum potential fine to $500.
  • Refusal to accept a Notice to Appear - Second-degree misdemeanor; fine of up to $500, possible incarceration for up to 60 days.
  • Failure to pay fine or appear for hearing - Second-degree misdemeanor; fine up to $500, possible incarceration for up to 60 days.

Level 2

For violations of statutes or rules pertaining to:

  • Paying a fee to obtain a permit to possess captive wildlife or requiring the maintenance of records relating to captive wildlife.
  • Housing wildlife in a safe manner, and a violation results in the escape of wildlife other than Class I wildlife.
  • Capturing, keeping, possessing, transporting or exhibiting venomous reptiles or Reptiles of Concern.
  • License or permit for capturing, keeping, possessing or exhibiting venomous reptiles or Reptiles of Concern.
  • Bonding requirements for public exhibition of venomous reptiles.
  • Failure to prevent, or through gross negligence, allowing the escape of venomous reptiles or Reptiles of Concern.
  • Exhibition or sale of wildlife.
  • Personal possession of wildlife.

Penalty

  • First offense - Second-degree misdemeanor; fine of up to $500, possible incarceration for up to 60 days.
  • Second offense within 3 years of any Level-2 or higher conviction - First-degree misdemeanor; mandatory fine of $250 - $1,000, possible incarceration for up to 1 year.
  • A Level-2 offense within 5 years of any 2 previous Level-2 or higher convictions - First-degree misdemeanor; mandatory fine of $500 - $1,000 with suspension of all licenses for 1 year, possible incarceration for up to 1 year.
  • A Level-2 offense within 10 years of any three previous Level 2 or higher convictions - First-degree misdemeanor; mandatory fine of $750 - $1,000 with suspension of all licenses for 3 years, possible incarceration for up to 1 year. 

Level 3

For violations of statutes or rules pertaining to:

  • Housing of wildlife in a safe manner when a violation results in an escape of Class I wildlife.
  • Captive Wildlife when the violation results in serious bodily injury to another person by Captive Wildlife that consists of a physical condition creating a substantial risk of death, serious personal disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a body part or organ.
  • Use of gasoline or other chemical or gaseous substances on wildlife.
  • Release of Conditional Wildlife.
  • Knowingly entering false information on an application for a license or permit to possess wildlife in captivity.
  • Illegal importation or introduction of foreign wildlife.
  • Illegal importation and possession of nonnative marine plants and animals.
  • Release or escape of nonnative venomous reptiles or Reptiles of Concern.
  • Importation, possession or release of prohibited fish and wildlife.

Penalty

  • First offense in 10 years - First-degree misdemeanor; fine of up to $1,000, possible incarceration for up to 1 year.
  • Second offense within 10 years of any previous conviction of a Level-3 offense - First-degree misdemeanor; mandatory fine of $750 - $1,000 with permanent revocation of all licenses, possible incarceration for up to 1 year.

Level 4

For commission of a Level-3 violation after permanent revocation of a license or permit.

Penalty 

  • Third-degree felony; fine of up to $5,000, possible imprisonment for up to 5 years.


FWC Facts:
Within 24 hours of hatching, young whooping cranes can follow their parents away from the nest. Together, they forage for plants, insects, snakes, frogs and small animals.

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