A blog by spcaLA president, Madeline Bernstein

Jan 27, 2010

Call to Action: Tree Frogs, Bull Frogs and Turtles - Oh My!

The California State Fish and Game Commission, at their FEBRUARY 3rd meeting, is proposing to ban the importation and/or sale of live frogs and turtles for human consumption .

Over the past decade spcaLA has shared with and submitted to the commission a catalogue of some of our findings regarding the importation of red eared sliders, soft shelled turtles, and other reptiles into California. We shared the details of an spcaLA cruelty case where the importer was operating with a forged Fish & Game permit, was in possession of prohibited/endangered species and applied for and was granted a new permit while incarcerated on our case! (This was corrected!) We shared lists of numerous diseases found in these animals upon necropsy and veterinary findings which supported the theory that these animals were not hatched from farms but rather poached from the wild. We offered verification to the Department that there is ongoing depletion of these species in other states such as Louisiana, Arkansas, and Florida.

Yet, over two million live bullfrogs, turtles and other animals continue to be imported into our state each year, and continue to spread diseases to our native wildlife and to humans. Additionally, these animals are subjected to acts of cruelty from capture to market.

Existing laws designed to protect the public from disease and the animals from acts of cruelty are ignored and there are insufficient resources to enforce all the laws. A ban, sure and simple is the only true and effective solution.

Please write, fax or email John Carlson, Executive Director, State Fish and Game Commission, 1416 Ninth St., Sacramento CA. 95814. Fax: 1 916 -653- 5040. fgc@fgc.ca.gov.

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