The National Reptile & Amphibian Advisory Council (NRAAC) is a not-for-profit educational organization, staffed and run by volunteers, dedicated to producing an annual symposium on laws, rules, and regulations regarding reptiles and amphibians at the local, state, national, and international levels.
Our goal is bringing together people interested in reptiles, amphibians, and the law, whether they are pet owners, breeders, stores, businesses, rescues, rehabiltators, educators, researchers, zoological institutions, herpetolgical organizations, or government agencies,to discuss the impact of law and regulation on the keeping, breeding, care, and conservation of reptiles and amphibians. To get involved, please join our working group on Facebook.
Planning for the second annual Reptile and Amphibian Law Symposium and Workshop to be held in Washington D.C. at the George Washington University Foggy Bottom Campus November 8-10, 2013 continues, with a second round of speaker invitations slated to go out next week.
Recent additions to the speaker and panelist lists include Priya Nanjappa, the Amphibian and Reptile Coordinator for the Association of Fish & Wildlife Agencies and one of the authors of the book "State of the Union: Legal Authority Over the Use of Native Amphibians and Reptiles in the United States." Priya will be representing both the AFWA and PARC (Partners in Amphibian and Reptile Conservation).
Also recently added is long-time reptile breeder Eugene Bessette of Ophiological Services in Florida, as well as Joni Scheftel, a veterinarian with the Minnesota Department of Health working on pet-related salmonella issues.
The 2013 law event is being co-hosted by The National Reptile and Amphibian Advisory Council (NRAAC), the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC), the Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians (ARAV), the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA), and the George Washington School of Law (GWU), which has provided the use of their facilities to host the event.
The 2013 Symposium will include three days of lectures, panels, workshops, breakout sessions, and talks bringing together all parties interested in reptiles and amphibians and the law to discuss changes and issues with current and proposed reptile and amphibian laws, including regulations at the local, state, federal, and international levels. The event will also discuss topics such as pet ownership, trade, conservation, and their impact of reptiles and amphibians on the environment and the environment's impact on them.
This event is free and open to all parties with an interest in reptiles, amphibians, and the law, but due to space limitations, seating is limited to the first 200 registrants.
California Assembly Bill AB 339, set for an April 2nd hearing, lays out a series of regulations prohibiting the sales of live animals at flea markets and open air markets, that would essentially ban reptile shows and sales in the state. Introduced by Assembly Member Dickinson the bill would prohibit persons and businesses from selling or giving away live animals at events that meet the state's definition of a "swap meet".
According to Section 21661 of the Business and Professions Code the definition of “swap meet”:
21661. (a) As used in this article, the term "swap meet" includes a flea market or an open-air market and means an event at which two or more persons offer merchandise for sale or exchange and that meets one of the following conditions:
(1) A fee is charged for the privilege of offering or displaying merchandise for sale or exchange.
(2) A fee is charged to prospective buyers for parking or for admission to the area where merchandise is offered or displayed for sale or exchange.
(3) The event is held more than six times in any 12-month period.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a), the term "swap meet," as used in this article, includes a flea market or an open-air market and means an event, regardless of the number of persons offering or displaying personal property or the absence of fees, at which used personal property is offered or displayed for sale or exchange if the event is held more than six times in any 12-month period.
All existing reptile shows in California would appear to fall under this definition.
The hearing is scheduled before the Assembly Committee on Public Safety for Tuesday, April 2nd at 9 a.m. in Room 126 of the State Capitol. Interested parties should attend the hearing to voice their opinion in person or should contact their State Assemblyman.
A study published this week in the journal Pediatrics touches on a topic that came up at least year's Symposium in Houston: the salmonella risk of pet amphbians.
Investigators from public health agencies across the United States found that African dwarf frogs are causing a nationwide outbreak of a specific Salmonella strain in children.
A group of health professionals make up the Salmonella Typhimurium Outbreak Investigation Team, which is part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Recently, the team has been examining the effects of African dwarf frogs on people’s health.
“Amphibians and reptiles should never be kept in homes with children less than 5 years old or with people who have immune deficiencies,” said lead author and CDC public health advisor Shauna Mettee Zarecki. This includes day care settings and nursing homes, she said.
This investigation is the first to report a nationwide Salmonella outbreak associated with amphibians.
The Centers for Disease Control will be represented on a panel about salmonella at the 2013 Reptiles and Amphibians and the Law Symposium in Washington DC on Nov. 8-10 at George Washington University. Get more information and register here. Registration is free.
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