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FL Has Worst Invasive Reptile/Amphibian Problem in the World.

Animals  (tags: florida, animals, exotic pets, snakes, lizards, AnimalWelfare, conservation, cruelty, endangered, environment, ethics, humans, investigation, killing, pets, habitat, protection, wildanimals, wildlife )

- 2430 days ago -
There's an invasion going on in Florida. Researchers at the University of Florida say the state has the worst invasive reptile and amphibian problem in the world. Many of the animals have been traced back to the exotic pet trade. VIDEO

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Pat B (356)
Friday September 30, 2011, 7:04 pm
There was a show on Discover, a while back, about this problem of snakes and cane toads. Unbelievable!! The Everglades used to be a pristine environment, and now the reptiles/ amphibians are proliferating quickly, ruining the natural ecological landscape, and grounds for many other wildlife species. A lot of the snakes were killed off by the rough winter last year, (I don't know about the toads), but hopefully something can be done to get them under control. Thanks for this info, Lindsey.

Pat B (356)
Friday September 30, 2011, 7:05 pm
oooops, I meant to type Discovery.

Lindsey Williams (234)
Friday September 30, 2011, 7:39 pm
I know it is so scary. And to even think of all the pets that have been let loose is terrifying. A few years ago in Okeechobee Fl where some of my family lives, a kid found like a 20 ft long python. It is unbelievable. The picture is online somewhere you have to check it out.

Constance F (418)
Friday September 30, 2011, 7:58 pm
This is so wrong on so many levels. I know there are lovers and good takers of reptile and aphibians, but NO. NO wild animals please for private ownership, for anything - except at it's native home where it belongs - for all the reasons stated above, and further, the animal will always have a less than ideal life in private ownership, not to mention, a possibly horrid one.

Mary T (178)
Friday September 30, 2011, 7:59 pm
Noted and thanks Lindsey I also heard about this.

Debbie Hogan (115)
Friday September 30, 2011, 8:12 pm
Saw a very disturbing report on this last night on Animal Planet. Makes one wonder if it can ever be brought under control. There's hell to pay for decades of unchecked, irresponsible "exotic pet" trading and smuggling. What a horrific mess...

Elsie Au (259)
Friday September 30, 2011, 10:15 pm
Again, another example of how we are ruining the environment. It is just sad that, at the end, animals have to suffer again...

Danuta W (1250)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 1:01 am
Thanks for posting.

Cheryl B (64)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 5:20 am

Cheryl B (64)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 5:21 am

Past Member (0)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 6:22 am
Good to know. Thanks for the article.

Lisa N (206)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 7:50 am
Being a native Floridian, I am very aware of this issue. It all comes down to ignorance & irresposibility. Total exploitation of these creatures for selfish purposes. Thanks Lindsey!

Ruth C (87)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 8:12 am
I live in Florida and I know that a lot of these animals are thrown out in the wild by irresponsible people!

I agree with Lisa Neste!

DORIS L (61)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 8:12 am
Oh this is great news. But I'm still going to retire to Florida.

Terry King (113)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 8:49 am
Southern Florida has the perfect habitat for these large reptiles. I'm afraid this is a problem that won't be solved easily.

Sheryl G (360)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 9:02 am
I think this exotic animal trade should be over, done with. The animals belong in their natural environments, period. Again, it's the human beings selfishness that "wants" these animals to look at but the animal is not living the life it was intended. It spends it's time in an aquarium or cage all for what.....some person's selfish wants.

Then we can't expect all of these people to take care of these animals correctly and many times once the interest is lost or the animal becomes to big or too much work they simply let them go. Now it becomes the problem to other humans, other animals, and the environment in general.

There is a reason certain animals belong where they do, it's the balance that is kept in check, when they are placed somewhere else the balance for other species are thrown off which leads to many problems. Stopping this trade and heavy fines for those caught selling them or having them will cut this way back. For the people who already have a one of these exotic animals now they could register them and be allowed to keep it until the liife of the pet is completed.

I also live in Florida and it's not only the exotic pets that people are careless with so many just release cats to the environments as well as they figure it's warm and they can catch bugs, lizards, and birds that are out there. It's not right either for the cat nor the environments as these cats multiply and really have hard lives. It then also becomes another humans problem to fix for what another human being so carelessly started.

Kashi Newell (0)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 10:53 am
I am now aware of how bad this problem actually is. It seems like we should stop importing exotic animals all together, since they are being released despite laws which should be preventing this. Perhaps the ones which have been released into the wild could be rounded up to supply these pet stores, instead of constantly importing more.

colleen p (38)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 2:17 pm
don't forget! the snakes are cross breading too right? creating a new, "unnatural" cross breed/races/speciese.

I thought most reptiles were not breed. the ethical ones. they breed them like someone breeds anything else. and I doubt "spay the frogs/toads/turtles/snakes" is going to work.

then again people have "cost effective, easy answer=/= humane and kind". it's kinder to desex everything, and wait 200 years for all the pythons in FL to go extinct and hope there is anything native left.

you can't blame a boa or python for eating baby alligators. you can put the blame 100% on loss of habitat and hunting by humans. the former deserves life, the latter is worthless parasites.

Melody B. (0)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 3:05 pm
And I thought it was only pythons and monitor lizards. I had no clue that it was amphibians too. Scary.

Nicole W (646)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 3:38 pm
mankind has no end to its destruction of this world

Veronica C (22)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 8:39 pm
Yeah, that is a problem...

Patricia W (94)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 9:18 pm
Just saw a documentary on AP last night about "Alien Invaders". Not only is there ball pythons, Fla now has the rock python, larger and more vicious. And they breed quickly in that environment. I hope we can get things under control and soon. TY Lindsey

Susanne R (235)
Saturday October 1, 2011, 9:45 pm
I've seen many documentaries on the subject, and it's quite unsettling. People are being very irresponsible when they purchase these exotic pets and set them free when they decide that they can no longer care for them or are not as careful as they should be and the pet manages to escape on its own. As the article states, the consequences could become dire in the upcoming decades. The exotic pet trade needs stricter oversight and enforcement.

Thanks for sharing this important and interesting story, Lindsey!

Past Member (0)
Sunday October 2, 2011, 11:13 am
This week, down here in So. Fla. it's the Aftican Snails and a piranha in a lake.

Kris B (136)
Sunday October 2, 2011, 1:05 pm
This is not going to be quick to fix but we can stop more for the future. Please don't OWN wild animals. Go to the wild and live with them.
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