FWC Meeting Feb 17-18

The following is the agenda, as it pertains to exotic cats, that will be heard by the Florida Wildlife Commission on Feb. 17-18, 2010

All are improvements, except for the exception they are making for "hobbyists" but there is far more we want them to do.
Please write Nick Wiley, Director of FWC 620 S. Meridian St. • Tallahassee, FL

 32399-1600 • 850-488-4676 


and ask:
1.  Remove the bobcat from the list of nuisance wildlife.
2.  Require that all possessors of exotic cats and Class I wildlife post a $10,000 liability bond, or 2 million in liability insurance coverage.
3.  Require proof from new facilities that they meet zoning and building codes, rather than putting the burden of proof on the county.
4.  Allow counties to create and enforce their own more restrictive wildlife possession regulations.
Let him know that you know he can do these by simple Rule Making process and that if the FWC fails to do so, you will support an amendment to rescind the FWC's authority over non native wildlife so that the citizens of Florida can be heard through their legislators.

  1. Draft Rules

    1. Reptiles of Concern (ROC) – Staff will update the Commission on progress of the ROC-Technical Advisory Group and ongoing efforts to respond to ROC issues.  Proposed draft rule changes to 68-5.004, Amnesty for Persons Relinquishing Non-native Pets, and 68A- 6.0072, Identification of Non-Native Venomous Reptiles and Reptiles of Concern; Escape, will be presented for consideration and approval.

    2. Captive Wildlife Rules

      1. 68A-6.003, Facility and Structural Caging Requirement for Class I, II and III Wildlife
         
        The proposed change to this rule requires the construction of new facilities housing Class I and/or Class II wildlife to meet local building codes.   It also requires new licensees housing Class I or Class II wildlife for commercial purposes to meet local zoning codes appropriate for conducting the commercial activity. 
         
        Currently, FWC provides notification to the county upon each instance of a new license requesting authorization for the possession of Class I or Class II wildlife.  The proposed change provides counties 30 days within which to notify FWC that the proposed facility does not meet local building codes and where applicable, local zoning codes.   Should the county fail to notify FWC within the given time frame, the application is deemed in compliance with county codes.  The proposed change addresses concerns expressed by counties.

      2. 68A-6.0022, Possession of Class I, II, or III Wildlife in Captivity: Permit Requirements
         
        The proposed draft language would require licensees that possess Class I or II wildlife to provide a copy of "Part B" of their Critical Incident and Disaster Plan to their local County Emergency Manager.  The proposed change addresses concerns expressed by counties.

      3. 68A-6.005, Transportation Requirements for Wildlife; Caging Requirements for Performing and Non-Performing Animals
         
        The proposed change to this rule requires labeling of shipments of live wildlife that are shipped in inter- or intrastate commerce.  The label is to include the complete name and address of the sender and receiver, as well as the numbers and species of animals contained in the shipment.

      4. 68A-6.0024, Commercialization of Wildlife; Bonding or Financial Responsibility Guarantee
         
        The proposed language would exempt licensees authorized to exhibit or sell Class III wildlife from demonstrating sustained and consistent commercial activity.  This change is primarily for "hobbyists" that possess wildlife primarily for their personal enjoyment, but still occasionally exhibit or sell their wildlife.

      5. 68A-6.0072, Identification of Non-Native Venomous Reptiles and Reptiles of Concern; Escape
         
        The proposed change to this rule addresses the permanent identification of Reptiles of Concern.  The proposed change requires all Reptiles of Concern possessed for commercial or personal use to be permanently identified by means of microchip or tattoo upon reaching 1" in diameter.

    3. Issues

  2. Update and Report on the Fox /Coyotes Enclosure Permit Process –  At the September 2009 Commission Meeting, staff was directed to report back to the Commission on the practice of permitting fox/coyote enclosures.  The report will address the history behind the practice, the permitting process, update on the current number of fox/coyote enclosures we have operating in Florida and the results of the recent investigations.  A suite of options for rule development or changes will be provided for input from the Commission.

    Nuisance Wildlife Issues:

    Major Proposed Rule Changes for 2010-2011

  3. Nuisance Wildlife Regulations

    68A-9.010, Taking Nuisance Wildlife – The proposed rule would clarify that bobcats may be taken under the authority of this rule only when the bobcat is causing or about to cause property damage, or when a bobcat is a threat to public safety; allow humane euthanasia as defined by the American Veterinary Medical Association; clarify that a chemical repellant may be used, but it is not an approved exclusion device for removal of bats from a structure; require live traps and snares to be inspected at least once every 24 hours; require live-captured nuisance wildlife to be released or euthanized within 24 hours of capture or trap inspection; and allow the transportation and release of nuisance wildlife at an off-site location if the following conditions are met:  The nuisance wildlife must be a native species; the release site is within the same county of capture; the release site is a minimum of 40 contiguous acres; the person releasing the nuisance wildlife has written permission from the owner of the release site and the transportation of wildlife does not violate any rabies alert or area quarantine issued by a County Health Department or County Animal Service.

February 17-18, 2010

Place:

Franklin County Courthouse – MEETING LOCATION
3rd Floor Courtroom
33 Market Street
Apalachicola, FL  32320
 
Water Street Hotel and Marina – SLEEPING ROOMS
329 Water Street
Apalachicola, FL  32320
Phone:  888-211-9239
WaterStreetHotel.com

For the cats,

Carole Baskin, CEO of Big Cat Rescue
an Educational Sanctuary home
to more than 100 big cats
12802 Easy Street Tampa, FL  33625
813.493.4564 fax 885.4457
Carole.Baskin@BigCatRescue.org
http://www.BigCatRescue.org

Free ways to join us and help the big cats:

Vote for us at VoteCats.com

Twitter:  Follow Me and be invited to enter our Animal Lover's Dream Vacation Giveaway! @BigCatRescue

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