USARK Lawsuit-THE BAN IS OVER

John

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News article in the journal "Science" on latest B.sal news: A deadly salamander disease just got a lot scarier | Science | AAAS

My own thoughts after reading it:

It is missing some current positive information on the fight against this disease, making it a very alarmist/doom-laden article. But fear sells media.

It sounds like (from the end of the article) Joe Mendelson of Zoo Atlanta wants to ban every amphibian coming into the US. In principle, I can see merit to that (that is the current situation with hundreds of salamander species anyhow). But what about the B.sal carrying goose described in the research? Shouldn't we ban geese then? Seriously though, what is reasonable and where would it end?

And then it's important to remember the only known samples of B.sal in the US were imported by US researchers. Remember that studies showed that US researchers carried B.d. to new populations of amphibians in California. And wiped them out. Perhaps we should also ban the importation of diseases into the US for research if they're not already here.
 

josh1990

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Sadly you are right, fear sells and sells big. I read the whole article and thought, "Well what do they want to do?" Sure you could ban any frog, toad or newt from coming into the US but what are you going to do about the spores that get on the feet of water birds? How are you going to stop every goose, heron and sandpiper from entering their breeding grounds in the US? Shoot them? Put up a 10-mile tall net/wall? :rolleyes:
All I got from the article was doom and gloom to stoke the fears of any layman that read the article. It was like reading an article to ready us for a war.
I`m glad the information about this terrible blight is getting out there but it seems the info getting out is cherry picked, not the whole picture.
Josh
 

josh1990

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News article in the journal "Science" on latest B.sal news: A deadly salamander disease just got a lot scarier | Science | AAAS

My own thoughts after reading it:

It is missing some current positive information on the fight against this disease, making it a very alarmist/doom-laden article. But fear sells media.

It sounds like (from the end of the article) Joe Mendelson of Zoo Atlanta wants to ban every amphibian coming into the US. In principle, I can see merit to that (that is the current situation with hundreds of salamander species anyhow). But what about the B.sal carrying goose described in the research? Shouldn't we ban geese then? Seriously though, what is reasonable and where would it end?

And then it's important to remember the only known samples of B.sal in the US were imported by US researchers. Remember that studies showed that US researchers carried B.d. to new populations of amphibians in California. And wiped them out. Perhaps we should also ban the importation of diseases into the US for research if they're not already here.
John,
I have not heard the story of the researchers that carried B.d. to new populations in Ca and wiped those populations out! If you could relay the story to me would be great. That should have been in the article but I`m sure they just forgot. Cough-bull-cough...
Josh
 

SeraphimSept

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I guess I should learn how to ship soon, then.

I am also curious to hear how researchers brought Bsal to California. If you could post some sources of the story as well, that would be awesome.
 

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I think two things are being confused here:
1) B.dendrobatidis being inadvertently moved around the Americas [that is, "into California"] on the nets, boots, etc of scientists [or hunters, fishermen, hikers, hobbyists]. While there may be some specific instance of this, the earliest evidence I have heard of this fungus in the wild was 60-70 years in Quebec. Additionally, there seem to be strains native and endemic to the Americas [Brazil at least]. It's been spreading in the wild in North America for decades.
2) B.salamandrivorans was imported for research [not specifically to California, and not into the wild. I haven't anything new about that, but have yet to review this paper.

I think, realistically, we should have learned by now that the diseases we should be most concerned about aren't the ones we know about, but those we haven't discovered. The epidemics and disasters are almost always NEW diseases [or newly discovered]. The only effective solution is to ban ALL human transport of living organisms between continents and other isolated land masses. That includes people. Unpopular and unrealistic, but the only one which would be effective.
 

MarcKamil

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does this mean that when I move to California in a year I can legally bring my axolotls with me?
 

michael

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does this mean that when I move to California in a year I can legally bring my axolotls with me?
The Lawsuit was just about the Lacey act. The interstate shipping ban will probably be lifted. State and local laws are still valid.
 

pete

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Cool, to read this news
 

John

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Update and clarification for anyone still concerned:

  • The deadline passed at the beginning of June 2017 for USFWS to appeal the District Court of Appeals ruling that they couldn't apply the Lacey Act to restricting interstate transport of newts and salamanders (or any animal for that matter).
  • With the exception of offshore states, protectorates and the District of Columbia (Washington DC), you can ship and receive newt and salamander species that USFWS had tried to prohibit. Legally, you always could because the USFWS was misapplying the Lacey Act, but the District Court of Appeals ruling made that official.
  • The importation to the US of the prohibited species is still prohibited. This means that if a species isn't currently in the US then you are out of luck unless the USFWS rule changes in the future.
  • It seems likely that USFWS will try to get US politicians to implement a new law to allow the original ban to go into place. This process will take time, if it happens at all, but plan accordingly.
  • It is worth noting that this disease (Bsal) has yet to be found in the hobby or the trade in the USA. In fact it is only known to occur in the research groups who imported it for study, some of whom were directly lobbying for the ban. Sad irony.
 
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Inmyownzoo

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This is fantastic. When do you think the pet trade will recover and reflect this? Does anyone know where I can purchase female fire belly newts? I have two males- they’ve been with us for 14 years. Had a female but she died a few years ago. I’d love to add two females as long as it’s legsl again!
 

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The pet trade was dependant upon imports of wild specimens from Asia. I think it's unlikely that the combination of mass imports, low prices, a quarantine and treatment regime being emplaced, and a suitable legal change, will ever occur again. Best you might hope for is the last two things to change, in which case limited numbers of more expensive imports might be possible, either WC or CB.
 

JM29

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The pet trade was dependant upon imports of wild specimens from Asia. I think it's unlikely that the combination of mass imports, low prices, a quarantine and treatment regime being emplaced, and a suitable legal change, will ever occur again. Best you might hope for is the last two things to change, in which case limited numbers of more expensive imports might be possible, either WC or CB.

That's the case now in France :
There is not real ban for Amphibs but the conditions to respect to have the right to import them are very hard.
As a consequence, prices have jumped up (x4 to x10).
 

Chinadog

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I think that's the right way to do it, hopefully the higher value of the wc animals will mean they are treated with a bit more respect and also make it worthwhile rearing cb juveniles to sell.
 

mr cyclone

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Problem in the UK is we can’t trade with anyone , that includes CB. No more WC which I’m fine with , but buying and trading captive bred with Europe was a good way to keep the hobby alive and ensure genetic diversity, or acquire anymore species other than what we have here!.
The hobby is already Neish in general and this forum isn’t exactly buzzing with local keepers with diverse collections , it’s rubbish I have to spend my pocket money on sensible adult stuff now
 

Chinadog

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There are keepers with diverse collections, but most seem to keep their heads down nowadays. They aren't letting anything unusual, or even once common go and the babies they have spare soon find homes. There was a spate of people advertising on facebook I believe, but I hear it's died down a bit now and I'm not getting involved with the facebook Circus anyway.
 

fishfrogsNmore

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So I read through much of the article and it was an interesting read. However, it did not answer the questions I was hoping it would.

So it is now legal to ship these injurious species across state lines within continental U.S, but what about transporting them in your vehicle? For instance, I live in Connecticut (a state without reptile expositions). If I drive to New York and buy a newt and drive back to my state have I done something illegal? Or what if I go herp collecting outside of my state? Can I bring those salamanders into my state?
 
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