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Topic: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

It was pointed out to me recently that there is someone advertising in the Texarkana Gazette to buy turtles.  Sure enough, there was an ad in the PETS FOR SALE section to buy box turtles and paying "top dollar".  Yesterday this person added another ad wanting snapping turtles. It did not say "common" only "snapping".  That was enough.  I now have an ad running in the same section encouraging folks not to collect and sell them.  I did mention in the ad that is could be illegal to do this as well  (The paper is distributed in TX and AR).  Has anyone else seen similar ads? The ad is coming from TX (Houston area code).

Ed Black

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I dont know if Tx laws are the same or not. .. but good for you on posting the ad in response...

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I suspect this ad you found was fall out from the amendment in Texas prohibiting road cruising.

"SECTION 44. Subchapter A, Chapter 62, Parks and Wildlife Code, is amended by adding Section 62.0031 to read as follows:
Sec. 62.0031. HUNTING FROM PUBLIC ROAD OR RIGHT-OF-WAY PROHIBITED. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a person may not hunt a wild animal or bird when the person is on a public road or right-of-way.
(b) This section does not apply to the trapping of a raptor for educational or sporting purposes as provided by Chapter 49."

 

Many places used road cruising as a way to obtain animals..Not that I agree with raping the wild for sales when a pair of animals could be easily bred and sold.
Great job by posting the additional ad.
It would be nice if newspapers would learn the law so they could determine what is legal to sell in the way of animals and prevent certain ads from running.

I'm about to have an abruptly.

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

Why so negative on the collecting?  If they stay within the law what is the problem?  There are already regulations in place for commercial collection of turtles, and it is similar to the regs on commercial fishing.  I don't think that common snappers are at any risk of being wiped out.  If the animals are destined for overseas, they won't be after adults anyway and I have a pretty good idea about where they might be going.  Mentioning that the ad might be illegal is accusing the person of being crooked without even knowing for sure if they're acting illegally or not.  It's a good way for the herp community to make enemies.

Some of the sampling techniques that I use have been handed down from commercial turtle trappers.  I really don't think people realise how many turtles are out there and how hard it would be to extripate something like a common snapper or a red eared slider.  As far as box turtles go, the amount casually collected is surely much much much much much much lower than those killed on roadways.

And remember, all of the pretty captive bred animals people keep originated from wild animals.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster is TRUTH

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I just do not like the commercial collecting of these critters.  I only informed the ad readers that there are laws in place for them to abide by.  I did not accuse them of anything. Their ad did not state that it was for Common  Snapping turtles, just snapping turtles. Most folks cannot tell the difference in a Common and Alligator.  And to your point, there is enough road kill of turtles without having commercial collectors taken them.

Ed Black

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

And to your point, there is enough road kill of turtles without having commercial collectors taken them.

My point here is that there is a large number that can be removed from the population, and the population can sustain itself.  The amount that is commercially collected is small compared to the numbers that are lost due to roads, habitat loss, etc.  This number that is commercially collected is monitored and is kept in check.  To manage an animal you have to get away from the individual and look at things at a higher level.  If people are looking at it from  the "there are enough already gone, that collecting more is horrible" they aren't looking at the picture from the community level or higher.  If they step back and look at the big picture, they can see that the amount being taken is very small.  In fact I'd even argue that commercial collection of red eared sliders is a GOOD thing in just about any numbers.

If you go out, set turtle nets, catch turtles, and realise how many are actually out there, you'll see that in the end commercial collection/scientific collection/pet collection is NOT our enemy.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster is TRUTH

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I dont think the laws for sliders was put into effect for maintaining the wild population exclusively, I think there were disease concerns...And, that law is Federal, not just on the community/state level. Im not sure, Bobby - if you are saying you agree with wild collection for resale - or if you're just saying not to condemn a guy for selling? I'll agree with the average joe not doing harm to the species or local population of animals by collecting them from the wild... but if a business is in business to DO business, shouldnt he do it legally? Wouldnt his practices, IF they were illegal - have a negative impact on the local community? Seems to me on a private citizen level, as you're speaking of - little would harm, even if its just a small infraction of the law - but the bigger the business, the more he should know better, IMO. Again, we shouldnt be in the position to monitor forums for illegal activity, but if a person wants to contact that seller or publish advisories in a newspaper in response to other ads, thats his business.

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

And, that law is Federal, not just on the community/state level.

I guess you're assuming I'm talking about the 4 inch rule law?  I'm not even talking about that.  I'm talking about management as a whole.  I just mentioned sliders because personally I'm all for the collection of them at any level that people want to as it has been shown that you can't erradicate the darn things even if you try.

There is NOTHING in the ad that suggests he's doing anything illegally.  So what if he didn't spefically say common snappers, most turtle trappers that I've dealt with won't touch an alligator snapper with a 10 ft pole due to legal concearns.  When a turtle trapper talks about snappers, they're usually talking about common snappers unless specifically stated.  And besides, it was in the paper classifieds, I don't think it warrants him to spell out everything.

Wouldnt his practices, IF they were illegal - have a negative impact on the local community?

Hmm, well, not necessarily.  Just b/c something is in the law books doesn't mean that it is set in stone as the de facto standard for conservation.  Sure, laws should be followed.  A simple phone call to the guy, or even investigating if the guy is behaving in an illegal manner would probably be the first step to correct things, not running an ad trying to put the guy down.

I urge that if people think turtles are over collected, go to a turtle market.  There are several around the state.  Look at the literal truck loads of turtles that get brought in.  Talk to the people.  You'll find out that even with the large numbers that they're bringing in they're still catching them for 10-15-20 years in the same areas.  If they were over collecting they'd run out of turtles really quick.  People are really quick to jump on the bandwagon of "don't take that out of the wild for commercial or scientific purposes!" but are alright with people collecting for pets.  They assume that the population structure of all animals are at such a point that removing just a few animals will knock it out of balance, when that really isn't the case.

The Flying Spaghetti Monster is TRUTH

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I agree with some of your points Bobby, but just as you said the sale ad said nothing about them being wild caught or allie snappers or anything, Ed did not say he was "putting the guy down" in his ad either. He said he posted an ad advising potential readers there may be laws against the sale of herps in that area, or maybe he even said turtles, I dont know..

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

Talk to the people. You'll find out that even with the large numbers that they're bringing in they're still catching them for 10-15-20 years in the same areas. If they were over collecting they'd run out of turtles really quick.

I believe I've read similar assertions regarding the north Atlantic cod fishery.  IMO, its a bad idea to let a commercial market regulate itself, though I don't think that is the case here.  All I'm saying is I'm not sure that a commercial turtle collector will present the best arguments regarding population health.  I have the same argument against rattlesnake roundups, etc.

Van

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I don't necessarily have a problem with taking some animals from the wild..Don't get me wrong..
But doing so without knowing the laws is asking for trouble.

People will blindly do anything for money, including dredge neighbor's ponds or lakes for turtles..If it's illegal to sell or trade native species in Arkansas, how is it legal to post in the classifieds ASKING someone to go out and collect native animals for resale?

I believe the point behind the ad Ed posted was to advise people to CHECK the legalities BEFORE attempting to collect any Arkansas native animals to resale.  Perhaps I read that wrong..?

I'm about to have an abruptly.

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Re: TURTLE BUYERS ADVERTISING IN THE PAPER

I believe the point behind the ad Ed posted was to advise people to CHECK the legalities BEFORE attempting to collect any Arkansas native animals to resale. Perhaps I read that wrong..?

 
He said that he mentioned that it might not be illegal, but he also said this, "I now have an ad running in the same section encouraging folks not to collect and sell them."

Encouraging folks not to collect and sell is different than encouraging them to do it legally. While I don't have a problem with collecting (as many of you already know), I do feel that it should be done legally and Ed saying that it might not be legal may have made a difference. I personally would have just called the person, politely make sure that they are within the laws, and then went from there. Either way, hopefully it will all work out.

Josh Engelbert
Copan, OK