ACTION: CatX Threatens Entire Herp Nation!

US Fish & Wildlife Service Seeks CatX to Avoid Due Process For Injurious Listings
US Fish & Wildlife Service Seeks CatX to Avoid Due Process For Injurious Listings

(Some people are attempting to make public comment by commenting on the Herp Alliance Blog page. This will NOT work! Comments must be emailed directly to FWS at email address with sample letter)

The “Categorical Exclusion” (CatX) proposed earlier this month by US Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS) is the single most dangerous threat ever fielded against herpetoculture! If enacted, CatX would pave the way for FWS to easily add species to the Injurious Wildlife list of the Lacey Act by waving due process under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). NEPA requires due process with science, economics and social impact considered prior to listing. CatX would eliminate NEPA mandated impact studies! Please read this entire alert and take the action outlined below!

Small Business Administration Meeting:

On July 17, 2013, the US Herpetoculture Alliance led a coalition of small business stakeholders and associations in a meeting with the Small Business Administration Office of Advocacy (SBA) in Washington, DC. SBA was interested in collecting input from stakeholders regarding small business impacts of the proposed FWS CatX. This was the most important high level government meeting in several years; and likely the last prior to the CatX debate. Participants included representatives from the Association of Zoos & Aquariums (AZA), Zoologic Association of America (ZAA), US Herpetoculture Alliance, The Frog Ranch, Gourmet Rodent and Vida Preciosa International (VPI). Our coalition was very well received, and we believe SBA will come out in support of small business. PIJAC/USARK were invited, but declined to attend.

Meetings at US House and Senate:

While in Washington, DC, Herp Alliance CEO, Andrew Wyatt met with Congressman Tom McClintock (R-CA) from the US House Natural Resources Committee (HNR) and professional staff from the Senate Environmental & Public Works Committee (EPW). FWS published notice of the CatX over the 4th of July holiday weekend without directly contacting impacted stakeholders. It has taken some time to analyze the CatX and formulate an informed opinion. The current deadline for public comment is July 31st. The Herp Alliance, AZA and ZAA have all requested that FWS extend the deadline for public comment on CatX by 60 days. HNR and EPW are supportive of our requests.

On behalf of the Herp Alliance, Congressman McClintock promised to ask new Interior Secretary Sally Jewell whether she was aware of the CatX and it’s implications.

Congressman Tom McClintock, Frog Ranch President Kim Thomas and US Herpetoculture Alliance CEO Andrew Wyatt
Congressman Tom McClintock, Frog Ranch President Kim Thomas and US Herpetoculture Alliance CEO Andrew Wyatt

“Madam Secretary, you may be aware that FWS recently proposed a rule for Categorical Exemption from NEPA mandates regarding “Injurious Wildlife Listings” under the Lacey Act. This Committee understands well the challenges in dealing with invasive species, however, I am concerned that exempting the FWS from addressing the Environmental, Economic and Social impacts of proposed additions to the list could be extremely damaging to small business; as several of the species FWS seems to be targeting are widely traded and would have a significant economic impact.  I’d like your commitment to look into this matter and get back to me before the service finalizes their rule making on this issue”. ~ Congressman Tom McClintock

The US Herpetoculture Alliance expects to have an answer from Secretary Jewell prior to the July 31st deadline for public comment.

Make Public Comment Today; Deadline July 31st!

It is of paramount importance that the herpetoculture community take CatX seriously and make comment prior to the deadline. Herp Alliance CEO Andrew Wyatt expressed his concerns regarding CatX, “I am afraid that CatX has not registered with herpers… this is the greatest threat to ownership and trade of herps in the history of herpetoculture”! CatX is a much greater threat than the python ban. FWS seeks to completely exclude themselves from the scientific and economic considerations they currently must observe. If CatX is enacted FWS can arbitrarily add any animal to the Injurious Wildlife list without due process under NEPA. Further, legal recourse under NEPA would no longer be available. Wyatt added, “Make no mistake, this is the biggest threat we have ever faced. Nothing is safe under CatX. All reptiles and amphibians are at risk! Please make public comment”.

The Herp Alliance implores you to make public comment prior to the deadline of July 31, 2013. We have developed a template covering the most pertinent talking points along with an individual request for a 60 day extension on public comment. You can also use the talking points to write your own comment. Email us at president@usherp.org for more detailed talking points.

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***Copy and paste the following template into an email and send it to FWS. Be sure to include the subject line. Make public comment prior to July 31 deadline. Email directly to:

Email Address: prevent_invasives@fws.gov

Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

  1. The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
  2. A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
  3. The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
  4. The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.

Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

Thank you.

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The US Herpetoculture Alliance remains committed to providing the most sophisticated and effective advocacy available for herpetoculture. Others cannot match our talent, experience or high level connections. We break the news first, provide in depth analysis on the issues and support the community with the most effective advocacy strategy and tools.

Click here for FWS notice in Federal Register on CatX: NEPA-FWS

Click here for US Herpetoculture Alliance analysis/ talking points on Cat X: USHERP CatX Talking Points 2013

117 thoughts on “ACTION: CatX Threatens Entire Herp Nation!”

  1. This is not right, we as Americans have the constitutional right to own pretty much whatever we please. It is just like the gun rights, they just want to take them away just so that the so called ‘government’ has all of the control. Its the same for the reptiles, were not hurting anyone. Make people register the big reptiles don’t just ban them!

    1. This has nothing to do with big reptiles… The arguement is that anything non-native to the US is Injurious Wildlife. This could effect everything from geckos to ball pythons… and chameleons and turtles too!

    2. I’m sorry, you neither as an American or a human “have the right” to own any other living creature. You’re at the top of the food chain and you are smart enough to keep another living creature contained. That’s about the extent of it.

      1. So jkarnes your saying that dogs and cats should be added to this as well as any other”domesticated”animal? No one has had a problem with them as pets but yet all if our shelters and streets are full of them starving all over the US and world at least most of the herps in the stayed are taken care of fed and housed. Yes there are people who get reptiles and don’t realize how much care is needed and are irresponsible and let them go in the wild but these are the few not the many. The animals that are a problem are from natural disasters happening and them either getting lose or being drug here in a storm or tide, not from careless people.

        1. Hi, when you say nobody has had problems with dogs and cats, you are aware of the THOUSANDS of people WORLWIDE who have been mauled, and quite often KILLED by their own or other`s “domesticated” dogs. Then there are the millions of birds and other wildlife that are caught and killed/eaten by “domestic” cats each and every year, so surely there`s a case for them to be banned???

          1. He’s pointing out that reptiles and amphibians are being unfairly persecuted, even though their owners take very good care of them. Dogs and cats are neglected, and like you point out, are dangerous. However, there is no bill against them. But politicians are scared of herps obviously. They can’t stand them. Herps aren’t cuddly like dogs and cats. No, they are ‘nasty, scaly, slimy creatures’. Oh, and ‘dangerous’. Even if this communistic amendment/bill passes, nobody will take my herps.

            And FWS, don’t you have enough control over the native species? Coleonyx switaki isn’t endangered. You just don’t know how to find them. But you protect them as though they are.

    3. Please point out the part of the constitution that allows us to “own pretty much whatever we please.” I’m not familiar with that part.

  2. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  3. I’ve worked at pet stores for 20 years now. I’ve invested all my savings into opening my own business. In the summer time my pet snakes require heat pads and heat lamps to live. The snakes would die left to room temperature in any home. They can not survive outside in the US and US Fish & Wildlife should not be above the law or due process! I’ve worked with large constrictors and venomous snakes and they are not the monsters the media and Hollywood make them out to be. A lot of the money me and other small businesses in the reptile world spend is at the hardware store and on our electric bill. An act like Catx passing will destroy my small business that I’ve worked for 20 years to achieve and have a major negative impact on the US economy. Please stop this outrage before it starts!

    Thank You!
    Bennett Trent
    Waukegan, IL

  4. I am from England and this ban would have a worldwide effect on herpoculture, Destroying the expanding information that the Americas give us on all aspects of keeping reptiles and amphibians, then trade to other countries would be greatly impacted not that I know a lot on this but isn’t America supposed to be the ‘land of the free’.

  5. I submitted my comment on the FWS site. I hope everyone understands that this does not only affect breeders, but has the potential to affect someone like myself who keeps reptiles as a hobby. As an outdoor enthusiast, I have seen first hand how an invasive species in the wild can harm native species, but to allow an agency to have the power to add a species they deem harmful without any real analysis is insanity.
    I truely hope this CATx does not go through. The potential to completely destroy a lifestyle we all love is there…….

    1. Dosen’t matter if it DID only affect breeders – where do us hobbiest get our snakes – so indirectly it would affect us. I really don’t understand (well, I do – it’s all money motivated) why someone can have a gun that has the potential of killing hundreds of people in a moment – but we are being threatned with the possibility that we will no longer be able to care for reptiles in our home? S M H

  6. hello fellow members of the animal kingdom. My name is Dustin, however, everyone knows me as Dundee. I am not going to give my reasons why/how this act would negatively effect the economy but rather how it would effect personal lives. I am 27 yrs young and as soon as I could walk I was out catching all sorts of animals in my parents back yard. Particularly reptiles. I find them fascinating and yet so simple. I now have a small collection of my own and have found myself loving each of my pets individually for their different characteristics. They r my kids! To those that wish to take my kids from me or make it impossible for future “mes” to have any, how dare u!!!! What gives u the right?! I work very hard to support myself and my “kids”. Would it be fare if someone said that u were not allowed to have more than one child? No! Or any children at all for that matter?! No! But that’s what makes this the land of the free. Or so I thought. You do not know me but if u did u would know how heart broken I would be if this passed! Furthermore, I can understand if these creatures were the cause of many human fatalities/yr. But more people die from their honeybees than do from nonvenomous snakes. I have so much more I could say but feel if this isn’t enough neither will it be. So in closing please consider the impact not just to the economy, but to those of us that find these magnificent creatures as more than a paycheck or a cool thing to have; as a member of our family! Thank you for caring about my opinion and have a terrific day.

  7. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  8. I’m an Animal Control Officer, and a Soldier in the U.S. Army National Guard. I love all my animals? And i invest alot of money in to them. why is it that the US is trying to take away everything that, the people that make up the back bone of the US, makes us happy and what we are interested in. These animals will give you a whole new out look on life. most of mine only eat frozen thawed, which is a dead rat that was frozen then thawed out when its time to feed. meaning they would starve in the wild. mine are to lazy to kill there own food, much less hurt me or my family. This hobby has saved my relationship believe it or not its something we both get excited about and we feel acomplished. ask all the high school kids who have seen my snakes how much they now appreciate what these beautiful animals do.

  9. I find it Unconstitutional and a violation of my rights granted to me by the hundreds of thousands of people have died making sure America remains free, to tell ne what animals i can and can not own. I was raised with an American alligator in Roseville, Ohio and he was better than any dog or cat we have ever owned. Our rights
    are violated and raped daily and now this? Give me a break!! What are you thinking? The invasion of invasive species happened mostly in Florida because of improper housing and uneducated people and hurricane Andrew destroyed that herp facility scattering nearly 1,000 non indigenous species into the wild. Taking animals and rights away from Americans isn’t going to fix this problem, but educating the public and kids could. Why not spend money on proper education classes for reptile owners instead of raping US of more freedoms???

  10. Did my part now do yours if u love your reptiles large or small. Even other exotic animals will come under attack if this passes, guinea pigs, ferrets, hamster, gerbils, parrots and other birds, the list could go on. This is just a small step before everything is gone that we love and is part of our families.

  11. I’d just like too say that trying to put an end too our hobbie that we all love is wrong due to misinformation and false facts and people over rcting is an infingement of our rights and it will also destroy alot of business and put alot of people out of work,and I think that’s well out of order the reptile world is a very big business and alot of people have made it there life.

  12. Please don’t take away the variations of reptilian pets in the us! They have grown to be part of our families and our lives, and we’ve grown to love and care about them, just like other people feel about dogs and cats and other pets. Our conservation through captivity helps their species and variants from being destroyed like many other forms of wildlife, and we need them too. They teach us to love and respect many more and various types of life and not to treat reptiles with fear and hatred.

  13. Email FWS is useless, we tried that with the big snake ban and it’s clear they don’t give a flying crap about the public’s opinion, this need’s to be hit at a congressional level.

  14. Also seems to me anyway – that tons of e-mails saying the same thing wouldn’t have as much impact as ones that are more personal – but perhaps have the templet – then a personal note at the bottom?

  15. Not being rude or mean but this is straight out bull shit. Why because its our right. Further more you relize how many buisnesses will go out of buisness. This economy is already dead its not coming back and now morons like yourself is trying to kill another part of it . I for one will continue to buy sell and trade these amazing animals and keep my certain personel pets . And they will be protect just as my family will be with deadly force if provoked. I believe in my rights my freedoms and I cant let them be taken wo a fight. So if u want to finish of this economy this is going to do just that.

  16. I could not believe this wen I read it . We have worked so hard to keep and educate people . With our reptiles and now u could take them just like that . It should be ur american right to keep whatever u want as long as all the proper steps are inplace .i think its crazy u can try to take reptiles but if u get a dwi all u get is a slap on the wrist thats wat yall should be trying to legislate!

  17. This ban is completely a bad idea there is a huge industry that could and would be ruined by it reptiles should not be banned there is a lot of educational value behind them

  18. I’ve been working with reptiles my whole life and not only do they mean a lot to me they mean a lot to my family it would be a heart breaking thing to lose my rights to own to amazing reptiles that are like family they bring nothing but joy to my life

  19. Politicians at it again! This ban is useless and perfectly unnecessary! Reptiles are awesome animals that are so misunderstood. By trying to pass this bill they are destroying the future of this hobby for the younger generation. Please find something more important to ban!

  20. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  21. the government needs to stay out of people’s homes & worry about more important things like all the people losing their homes because of the economy.fix themselves before they try fixing everything else nosey bastards

  22. It’s a shame that yall want to take people’s jobs and income . Theirs way more important things to worry about it this world then banding reptiles . I thought we live in a free world home of the free my ass . What do you gain by banning reptiles ?

  23. Get your hands off my reptiles and on to something like, i don’t know, THE DEBT THAT WE’RE SWIMMING IN RIGHT NOW.

  24. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:
    1.The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.

    2.A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    3.The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    4.The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.

    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  25. I will not stand for this!!!! You will NOT take MY baby away from me!!! I have had my snake for 6 years now and he IS a part of MY small family!!! I will fight for him just as hard as I would my son! I have tought other people AND children that not all snakes are “bad”. I’ve also turned people on to properly and safely keeping theses beautiful animals!! I had a small dog for 19 years that died last December of old age and by the grace of God I WILL keep my baby his woman and my lil boy (all three are snakes. Two are ball pythons and the other is a water snake). Theses animals are my life. I am not a breeder. I have my snakeS for the joy of seeing theses beautiful animals grow be happy and healthy. I had both my balls out just this morning. They make me happy and my son thinks they are awesome too. He himself owns an anole lizard. Are you going to take an 8 year olds pet away? Over my dead body will you break his heart!!! These reptiles are the same to us herps that a cat or dog is to other’s. Come up with another idea before you really piss us off !!!

  26. This is completely unfair!!! In most states, non-native animals can’t even survive outside! And any pet is used to being fed, not hunting so they wouldn’t stand a chance even if they could survive the elements. This is just like taking away someone’s dog or cat, and they do less damage!

  27. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    This act could end businesses in a time when we need jobs most. Not only are you taking away jobs, but you are taking away part of the family. Please don’t end our hobby over your uneducated fears. Get the facts and let us responsible owners continue this hobby! Not only that but this extremely short time period does not allow enough time for us to properly rally our team together and show the public that the government is getting power hungry. Why are you trying to shortcut the process of banning an animal? If you have an actual scientifically proven reason than by all means put it up for debate but this is just plain outrageous. Please for the love of the people, reconsider.

    Thank you for your time.

  28. you the “government” is always looking for a way to screw us over even more… i do not hurt anyone from doing what i do with my reptiles.. i give a small buisness money when i purchase them, i give a small buisness money when i purchase the live food.. which in return all this is helping create a job to and for someone!!! I WILL NOT STOP DOING AND ENJOYING WHAT I LOVE… AS THE SAME FOR MY GUNS… IF YOU WOULD LIKE FOR ME TO HAND YOU EITHER OVER, COME TO MY HOUSE AND TRY YOUR DAMNEST TO TAKE THEM… I AM SO SICK OF THIS WORLD AND BULLSHIT RULES AND HALF ASS FUCKIN REGULATIONS WHICH COINCIDE TOGETHER!!!!!! DONT DO THIS. YOU WILL PISS OFF ALOT OF PEOPLE, AS WELL AS KILL JOBS FOR THOUSANDS OF AMERICANS, AS WELL AS HOBBYIST LIKE MYSELF!!!!

  29. Hello my name , is JEFFREY BERMUDEZ.
    I a father of two children , I am proffesional master “chef”.
    I am also a small,
    reptile hobbiest/reptiles preservationist / breeder.
    Every for the last eight years, i have invested exactly 4, 000.00 a year for the last eight years . just buying exotic reptiles not including products . On a weekly base for feeding and their needs vets ,bedding, housing ,light, heatpads, lamps, thermostats, plugs, heat temp guns, spray bottle ,containers , distilled water, news paper, ect…..going by the Iitems listed a addditional 2,000.00 a year for eight years so that takes it to total of about six or seven thousand a year for my hobby. (How many people Iin just american keep exotic animals whats their cost ever year and what the pay into our economy?).
    Now lets talk about these companies that make tthese products!
    their not just one company!
    Several companies ,make all these items for us and some of these items are used by all americans in in their home .
    our families !! my point is all these companies will be effected by this ! Imagine how many people in the u.s alone keep reptiles, i.e exotic animals.
    All these entities ,will be effect by huge sales loss and the economy will drop alot of money in the trash. just by the lose of people in america that buy and need thes items to support their hobbies or small family businessplusbthe money we spend on each exotic pet. WE are educators to people who meet us ,see and know what we do .
    I spend days teaching my kids and peole about animals and all the worlds creatures. it’s important to care about life and protect animals from being destroyed. now lets look at the globel effect this will have from this just in these items that are made by these companies and most of them made right here in America.

    how many people do u think these companies employ?
    the people around the world that are effected by this will be a very large ecomoincal lose to americans .
    Not only am I a father and a parent of these animals and master chef. I am also a business analsist major and I know money !!!
    the effect this will have on us americans and its corporate entities will be huge . I promise your not ready for that to happen to our economy.
    And please think about my right to freedom to do as I wish as long as i am professionaland keep my animals care and my family is always at hand .I always educate people and teach proper animal care awarness.
    Would you take away a persons right to collect exotic cars/diamonds, furs, historical antiques, ect. So why this does some that destroys natural land / wild life animals home for a parking lot more of a threat to our wild life then me just keeping them in my home/ business facility .
    This just wont work!!

  30. The more laws they make ,the more people are gonna break them !! I have no respect for the law , or the idiots who make them up !!! I do ,however , have repect for what is RIGHT AND WRONG. KARMA…its a universal truth. Recently ,the state of California decided to make a bunch if ridiculous changes to the reptile regulations. This only affects those who get caught .Do you think anyone who had a red diamond rattlesnake as a pet for years is gonna have em put to sleep , or let em go , just because a new law went into effect ? Do you think some kids who find a glossy snake arent gonna bring him home and throw him in an aquarium ? Some rancher wont shoot a rattlesnake cause its on their ranch ? Who really benefits from these laws ,anyway ? POLITICIANS , who wanna make themselves look good by pretending to care ??? Laws are broken every minute of the day by all walks of life.Why dont they get caught. The legal system is a money makung industry. Lock someone up…give them free food ,free housing ,free everything …then put him on parole so he cant leave the things that got him in trouble in the first place !!! Meanwhile the prison guards can sell the prisoners tobbacoo and cellphones for a thousand bucks a pop ???Wher is the justice???? HEY POLITICIANS….MAKE SOMELAWS THAT MATTER !!! Leave my reptiles alone !!!! I will die for my rights !!!!!

  31. To enact this will take away constitutional rights of the American individual. This act is just a way for the government to “have control” over the American subjects. The reptile industry takes up a great deal of the business world, where many individuals share in a passion they love. Granted that not everyone in the reptile industry likes or loves snakes, but this also includes your smaller species such as geckos, lizards, and monitors too people. The ban that you may not ship specific species of snakes across certain state lines hindered a lot of the industries happiness. To enforce this act would hinder the economical balance of the reptile industry. As an active reptile owner, I stand strong behind my views as myself and my children enjoy the company that our reptile family bring us; they have become part of our family, and to take away our rights as the American citizen to have the right to own or possess these wonderful creatures would be as equal as stating that all citizens may not possess canine or feline companions. Do NOT enforce this act.

  32. Need to stop try band reptile and non wildlife that not native to this land. We were native look at what we have done tore down timer to make citys ,road etc. wild life have move and some case die. Let stop think before we make decision .this is a business take that away many business will go out of business and these provide money to other business. Lets band stupid not a hobby.

  33. I refuse to let anyone take my babies from me!!! I am a HUGE herp lover and I dare a single souls to even step foot on my premises with that bull!! You will be staring death in the face. Literally. Hearses, caskets, coffins, Morticians. You name it we got it!!!
    This is the stupidest thing I have ever heard!!! Why would someone want to pass a law saying you can’t own a herp. What have they done to ANYONE?!? Nothing! They will be ruining businesses for people. They will make people loose their jobs. They will be taking people family away from them!!! Do they not understand that?!?!? I know they don’t care. But that’s like telling them “hay we’re passing a law saying you can’t have your kids anymore” and then they take them away. How ya gonna feel when that happens hmmm??!!!?!?!? Because that’s EXACTLY what your doing!!! I won’t stand for this, nor will my sisters, brothers, parents, husband, my ENTIRE families!! I’ll have shot gun in hand ready for any person who tried to take my babies from me, and dogs at the ready to protect my home.

  34. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  35. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:
    1.The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.

    2.A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    3.The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    4.The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.

    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  36. Most of the good folks above have outlined great reasons that CatX is a bad idea so I won’t rehash those here. It should be enough that I agree with many of their points. I would like to tell you, instead, about the positive effect I have seen on a young American citizen that I know. He is only 9 years old yet he is already committed to his studies at school in hopes of a scientific career with the intent to help both animals and fellow humans. His future choices will tell us exactly what field his career will take, but I can tell you now that this interest has been fostered by the positive aspects of keeping and studying reptiles, amphibians and fish (not to mention the cats and dogs mentioned above). Without these opportunities I seriously doubt that he would have found tangible inspiration to drive his studies. These animals have driven him not only to be a champion for the preservation of threatened and endangered species, both domestic and abroad, but also to prepare and deliver presentations to other children and adults in his community. The feedback he received lead to an opportunity to speak to an even greater audience via an internet radio show that will be heard by countless others. His desire to do this, and to avoid so many of the distractions that currently occupy our young people, should be an obvious endorsement of the message that this issue deserves careful treatment before decisions are made. I implore you to consider not only the extension that has been very politely asked for, but also to take a more conservative approach when considering ways to resolve the invasive species problems. A blanket ban is not the best method towards the proper resolution here.

  37. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  38. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

    Nick Glauner

    —————————————————————————————————-

  39. I own 6 snakes myself and rescue poorly cared for snakes by people who never should have never owned one.
    Now the US government whats to remove take our right away to own these loving creatures from us?
    Well time the people stand up and say “NO” to the Feds and keep our Snakes cause next dogs and cats will be hit and soon we will have no animals in our lives.
    Did these Foolish Senator’s not read the Bible they take so highly of.
    Genesis: “God make ALL animals to SERVER mankind!”
    So if this Senator is so holy then they need to follow their Bible.

  40. I am a person with severe depression, fibromyalgia and am bi polar…I was always afraid of reptiles until a few months ago, I got my first Bearded Dragon, and I never thought I would love a animal more than I do this lizard…he has brought joy to me, he makes me laugh everyday and loves to cuddle. He falls asleep on me every night…I take him outside, for walks, he is a part of our family now, not to mention he helps with my disability
    Would you go into a persons home and make them get rid of their child because they had to many, or because you didnt like them
    I am a person who could not have children and my pets ARE MY KIDS…they are treated better than a lot of kids are in this world
    You will be hurting the economy, not just reptile businesses, pet stores but all the people who breed the different insects to feed these animals down to making all the lights, enclosures etc these animals need
    My dog even loves my lizard,…they say animals/reptiles dont have feelings but they do, why hurt all these animals when there is not a need to…they are LOVED!!!
    EDUCATE EDUCATE EDUCATE thats the answer
    Please dont pass this law and make me get rid of my child…..and make my disability go back to a severe depression again, not when I am beginning to feel better than I have in a VERY LONG TIME!!! Chuckles gives me a purpose in life again!!!

  41. I believe that we should have the right to keep reptiles as long as it is done in a safe and responsible way. The legislation that would put that right in jeopardy is wrong. It is discriminatory towards animals that are harmless. What will it be next our dogs or cats maybe our fish tanks becouse they promote tranquility! ! People have been keeping pets as long as we have been on this earth so please do not take that away from us there are so few little things that we can enjoy do not make the list shorter.

  42. I am Against. Doing this violates our right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. As well as making our economy much worse then is now.

  43. Im against it because it will destroy many familys and buisness. This economy is already destroyed and this is just going to put more people out of work and on unemployment. Not to mention turn slot of good law abiding americans into criminals cause I for one have to move to snother state my pets are all coming with me burms retics anacondas all will. Ill become a felone in teo ways I crossed state lines with my pets and the 2nd amendment the right to bare arms will be used to protect my pets. There is no way u can legally do this and if you had any common sence you would not even think about this. You will force all of us to go underground and continue out trade and passion . Not to mention this issue is locallizzed to southern fl no othere northern state can sustain these animals further more there is no science behind these aligations . And if you do this without due process thats a direct violation of the constitution by the US government. The constitution is there to stop the government from infrigging on our rights this should be counted as tyranny.

  44. I think it needs to be clearer what people need to do Andrew. Folks, this needs to be copied into your email and sent using the E-mail address Andrew provided. I am pretty sure FWS does not check this website for public comment. Do not let your voice be in vain.

  45. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  46. I feel like we should keep our reptiles I don’t feel like they do any harm to people or the Community if anything it teaches The community about these amazing reptiles that’s been on our planet for millions of years.reptiles are a big thing in my self my get away from everyday problems at work and life

  47. let me hit it were the hard truth is, your dog isnt a native to florida. Should it be banned? would you look at this in a different way if i put a dog in it? reptiles dont do anything wrong, most is just human error and poor education. I feel that the catx is very emature, and not fair. Why should we, the people, have to worry about our reptiiles being banned? ”thier not native, they eat endangered speicies”. I disagree. dogs and cats eat more and kill more endangered species than any reptile, and thiers ben many dogs to kill humans and kids. so you tell me, whats fair to ban. would it be fair to ban your dog? You probly thinking, ‘no”, And itss not, so why the heck would a stupid law ban reptiles. Its not thier fault, why should they;reptiles; be punished. I have a snake. Shes just a boa, but she is smart, she has knowledge, and trust. And shes protected me, especialy when someone came into my house unwelcomed.

  48. My not understanding this Bs your not creating jobs your taking jobs .Why cause yall not getting a piece of the pie . After you take are reptiles whats next cats and dogs .Deal with the world’s real issues and no5 messing with the reptile world . It all boils down to money and as far as 5he lacy act its completely bs the big snakes can’t survive passed central fl really do your research before messing with us

  49. Time to get rid of dog’s and cat’s too. They run rampant in the streets. They over breed and come up with their own wild lifestyles. If we can’t enjoy what we love, why should anyone else? By taking out the industry, you’re destroying lives and careers that have been built over a life time. This won’t go down without a fight. Personally, I won’t give up any of my reptiles nor will I stop buying them.

  50. To ban reptiles and amphibians would be like banning dogs and cats its unconstitutional. To take away a hobby a passion and a lifestyle from people in the herptoculture is just plain wrong. What type of government would support the taking away of people’s pets and their passion. Most of my life short as it may be has been devoted to reptiles to show they are not blood thirsty monsters but love able pets. I’ve had anacondas to savannah monitors to big Burmese pythons. And they are animals yes but they are my pets and part of my family as well

  51. Hi my name is Andrea and I have something to say… “Don’t ban reptiles”!!! These reptiles mean more to me then just looking at them as coldblooded animals. I’m tired of people looking at reptiles as all dangerous animals! When people think about getting bit by a snake or any reptile people think about pain, blood… Or even venom :/ and this is so far from the truth! People never think when they get a new dog how much damage a dog can do if it went after someone!!! Also if u looked up what I have learned that statistics show that people die from more horse riding accidents then by reptiles. These reptiles are my pets, and I treat them with the respect they deserve. I never underestimate reptiles but that’s because I RESPECT the animal. If you take away reptiles, you might as well take away every animal!!! Reptiles are my life and I refuse to let anyone change that for me!

  52. What about the fact that if some of these reptiles are not bred in captivity, they could cease to exist as the wild populations are dwindling down with development. Can zoos can keep populations diverse enough to continue the species?

  53. Well, this comes as no surprise. The Obama administration has done away with due process in many other agencies, why not FWS as well — especially when it comes to his administrations perception of “environmentalism”.

    If you helped put him in office, take note now, that what he’s doing here at FWS has already been done in DHS and the EPA, and other agencies. If you want government to quit running roughshod over due process and rule of law, pick your votes in 2014 with care and we might be able to balance farces like this back out to some semblance of due process and rule of law again. If not, expect more heavy government hands smacking you around, squashing your liberties and killing jobs.

  54. I have gone ahead and sent my email to the us fish and wildlife, I would just like to state that as both a former zookeeper and marine that I really believe this is absurd, I keep many different species of reptile and amphibian and almost all that I have are used in educational presentations, I have seen so many children’s faces light up when they see a frog, a bearded dragon or even a snake and then I tell them yes you can touch the animal and its like Christmas morning for them…this isn’t only about business…its about the future generations enjoying these animals…invasive species have been a problem forever, why the sudden concern…rats …cats…just to name two, these two animals alone have caused the extinction of other species…we weren’t worried then…why now…thank you for listening to my rant

  55. Next year will be my first breeding season and I would like to have that experience till the day I die. I’m 13 and reptiles are my thing, there is nothing else that I am that into, I don’t understand why you have to take away our right to own non-native species. They don’t do harm at all, I mean yes the Burmese pythons are taking over florida but that doesn’t mean they have to be banned from the rest of the U.S. please do not take away our right to own reptiles

  56. Why is it that people who Dont have.
    A Clue no understanding of whats going on are always the ones that want to change things
    all because people who are afraid and dont want to learn
    about reptiles
    The masses should not suffer for the mistakes of a certain few ….the city and state should deal with each case …..as a case by case ….so the rest of us dont have to suffer

  57. Do you realize how much damage cats, dogs, rabbits, pigs , hurt the environment ! How many people who have dedicated there lives , to these magnificent species …you shall hurt. The millions of dollars generated in taxes, in large cites as well as small towns…but yet its ok to have rattlesnake round ups ?? Captive husbandry works,it keeps more kids entertained in a much more positive frame of mind , than drugs,and other negative activities . Is this proposal really for the people…..really about the environment? Please be educated about the long lasting impact you will have on millions!!!!

  58. Reptiles are not to blame, lack of regulations are. Reptiles need to be regulated and monitored like cars,planes,boats and guns then we can all enjoy the bountiful diversities of all life on earth.

  59. There needs to be flexibility. In australia the only pets you can own without a license are non-native species. why not start a license scheme for non-native animals. It ensure all owners know and abide by the rules, decreases the chances of animal abuse and satisfies the governments lust for money and red tape. when you think about it, horses, cats, chickens. how strictly will they police non-native animals? its impossible. there will be precidents to avoiding this law set within a week cause they havent thought this through.

  60. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044
    IT’S JUST PLAIN WRONG!

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:
    1.The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.

    2.A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    3.The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    4.The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.

  61. I would like to take a moment to ask you not to propose any more regulations on the herp. society. We all understand why the lacy act was enacted but all agree it was prematurelly enacted. These animals are not the evil envading species the fear mongering media would have you believe. My wife and i have been herpers most of our lives with differnt reptiles, we are planning on making a future for our family by breeding and distributing these amazing creatures. Please remember that most of us herpers out here are responsible, legal, caring owners. We love our animals just like most people love there dogs, or cats or birds, or any other pets. Please remember that these animals could never live in the wild in 99 percent of the United States. So there for they cant be detramental to indiginous wildlife, please if you do the actuall research you will see that there is no reason to fear these animals nor restrict the commerce and trade of these animals, anymore than you would any other “Normal” pet.

  62. Oh god more meddling from politicians. If I am understanding this correctly, this is more or less some act of government which allows for arbitrary prohibition on any and all species any politician has the desire to ban, for any or no reason whatsoever? This would in effect push the hobby into the underground, correct? Any time there is a ‘prohibition’ on anything, and that activity and/or goods or services is pushed into the underground, inevitably along with it comes a dangerous criminal element. Just like Gambling, liquor, and prostitution in the golden era of the mafia, just like bootlegging whiskey & moonshining, just like the drug cartels of our modern era. When people want something, they will find a way to get it. Those who can provide it will make a fortune, and those who may compromise the operation are usually exterminated. Nothing new there, same story, same play, different actors. Oh, and guess how much tax money our genius government makes off these high dollar, underground sales? Yup, that’s right, not a single cent. Prohibition on all levels has been found to be completely pointless.. sadly its a lesson that looks as if will never ever sink in.

  63. I don’t think anyone should tell anyone what they can and can not have in their home. Just because the animal isn’t cute and fluffy doesn’t mean they don’t make good pets. I was scared to death of snakes until my son, Josh, with Reptitle Kings, opened my eyes to
    their beauty and uniqueness. I now have a deeper respect and greater understanding of these wonderful creatures.

  64. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  65. Subject Line: Categorical Exclusion; FWS–HQ–FHC–2013–N044

    I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    1. Heather,

      It doesn’t do any good to post that letter here in this forum (where most of us totally agree with you!) even though a lot of people are doing it.

      The people at FWS aren’t going to search the web to discover people’s feelings and comments – you have to send your comments, your letter, directly to the FWS to get their attention. Also contacting your congressman is a really good idea also.
      The email address where you need to send your letter is found above or below where you found the letter you copied.

  66. Herps are not the big nasties that people make them out to be. Yes there are some species that are venomous/argessive, but they are that way because that is how they hunt for their food. And to all the people saying that we are stupid and can not take care of other species and should not “own” pets… just stop. Most people that own animals consider them part of their family, not just property. I have been around ALL types of animals from gold fish all the way to tarantulas for 99% of my life and I love them all.

    I am opposed to the Cat X 100%

  67. I really don’t understand why they want to more people out of work. I also don’t understand why they want to turn more people into criminals.

  68. After reading USHerp’s most recent press release; I feel a clarification is needed on what is actually happening here, or perhaps I need a clarification.

    Press Release: “I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates.”

    The Lacey Act itself requires economic and social impact analysis to determine the significance of listing a species under the “Injurious Wildlife List”. The CatX is using NEPA to exclude due process as required by the Lacey Act. USHerp’s most recent press release suggests the exclusion is negating a NEPA requirement, when in fact they are using NEPA to circumvent Lacey Act procedures. Perhaps we should redraft the copy-paste letter to more accurately reflect the reality.

    Examples:
    Press Release: “CatX would eliminate NEPA mandated impact studies!”
    -should read: “CatX would eliminate Lacey Act mandated impact studies.”

    Press Release: “Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA.”
    -although true, it should read: “Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under the Lacey Act.”
    among changes needed to Letter:

    Currently: “I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates.”
    • Change to: “I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from Lacey Act mandates.”
    1. The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts as required by the Lacey Act.

    1. In order to make changes to the Lacey Act FWS must follow the mandates of the National Environmetal Policy Act (NEPA). NEPA is the mechanism that requires certain actions by FWS in order to change Lacey Act. It requires environmental impact studies (EIS) that require assessment of the science, economic and social impacts of potential changes. Please read our detailed talking points for a better understanding. http://usherp.org/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/USHERP-CatX-Talking-Points-2013.pdf. We have the best legal team on these issues in our sector.

  69. Leave our pets alone. We as Americans have the right to personal property and ownership. Quit buying into the HSUS, PETA, and ASPCA agenda to end pet ownership and let us own and love our animals how we see fit. We are not forcing our pets on you, so let us live our lives peacefully with our animals who we love and cherish.

  70. As a herp lover I hope this doesn’t happen but I wouldn’t mind seein mandates or registrations on some of these animals so they can be properly tracked and the owners held responsible for improper care or loss of an animal that doesn’t belong in that habitat

    1. Jennifer,
      Passing CatX wouldn’t accomplish this. No one would be checking on whether an animal was being cared for properly. No one would even do any research to see if one of these exotic animals, if released, would affect the environment, or society, or by how much.

      If CatX passes, my understanding is that the FWS can simply decide to totally ban a species – any species, actually – from being owned, bred, sold, or imported in the U.S..
      Banned without asking anyone, doing any research of any sort, and their ban would stand unquestioned – meaning no one would have the power to appeal, no matter how many studies were done that proved the ban was unnecessary.
      NO government agency should have that kind of power – even the President, himself, doesn’t have that much power with the extreme exception of an immediate threat to the whole country.

  71. I have to agree with Brandy Arena. This is nothing more than retaliation by the HSUS after their precious SB245 bill was killed.

    I wish the government would worry about more important issues like the unemployment problem, the wars we are currently still fighting, health care and social security reform, and a whole plethora of other issues we all face. To me these problems seem more important to our country that herps and the people that love them.

  72. I hope this doesn’t happen! :( Keeping reptiles is a great hobby which has a lot of benefits! We’ve all learnt so much about our reptiles and some species have now become stronger than ever with captive breeding, there is nothing at all wrong with keeping reptiles and amphibians as long as you do it right!

  73. I’m against The “Categorical Exclusion” (CatX) proposed earlier this month by US Fish & Wildlife Service (FWS). This would not only negatively effect local economies but further push more and more animals on to the endangered species list. Captive breeding, collection and sale of reptiles and amphibians ensures the continued existance of their species. I do believe these processes should be legal, state recognized, taxed and should be performed by only those permitted to do so. But there shouldn’t be increasingly growing limits on what species should be permitted for the aforementioned activities. All that does is choke local economy and strain the existance of these animals.

  74. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  75. I am against the proposed US Fish & Wildlife “Categorical Exclusion” from NEPA mandates. This action could facilitate the arbitrary addition of animals to the injurious wildlife list of the Lacey Act; potentially threatening the entire $1.4 billion annual commerce in reptiles and amphibians. Not only would it negate due process, but it would also negate legal recourse under NEPA. Categorical Exclusion could potentially become a tool to destroy my small business. Please consider the following points:

    The proposed categorical exclusion bypasses the requirement to consider economic and social impacts under NEPA.
    A categorical exclusion would not allow FWS to fully consider the beneficial impacts of declining to list a species under the Lacey Act.
    The proposed categorical exclusion is much broader than any of the other eight exclusions that FWS has approved under “permitting and regulatory functions”.
    The FWS’s “extraordinary circumstances” exception to a categorical exclusion is unhelpful because it does not apply to actions with high economic impacts.
    Additionally, the 30 day public comment period is far too short to make a fully informed comment. FWS published the proposed rule in the federal register over the holiday weekend. 30 days is not adequate to get full participation and quality comments. I am requesting that the public comment period be extended by 60 days.

    Thank you.

  76. I’m an Iraq vet with savior case of PTSD reptials save my life every day an help me just be around people an talk to them an is saving my relationship everyday an I no several other just like me in this hobby you take this away from us then we have nothing an u would just spit the the faces off all the men an woman who gave there life so we can keep our freedom an way of life I’ll never give mine up

  77. large snakes should be managed with security locks on an alarm system. i support the right to own exotic animals i just feel the wreckless endangerment is a real threat just not a large one. dogs mosquitos people and deer kill many more people in a year than all herp related deaths combined in domestic care! Fact! Alcohol is still legal and they want to rid all the snakes? This country is not thinking straight.

  78. I am against catX I am a responsible reptile owner and have been, I and my family enjoy our reptiles.this would be an outrage to something many people love.I will fight this.

  79. You all know, IF (God forbid) this passes, it won’t suddenly destroy the herp economy in the U.S.. Most people won’t even notice their personal freedom has been seriously violated and like so many other laws (like food label laws) that have silently hemmed us in, it will take a firm hold before anyone thinks they need to actually do anything about it.
    This illustration will hit home with the herp lovers here:
    If you put a frog in a beaker of very hot water, he will immediately jump out. But if you put the frog in a beaker of cool water, he will sit there content, even if you slowly raise the temperature until the frog cooks to death.
    Picturing this makes me shudder, but this is what is being done to us – A lot of bored bureaucrats with an agenda and too much money, are quietly boiling away our freedoms. Each inroad into our freedom isn’t TOO bad, and we find a way to live with each one, or discover it after the fact and except it as inevitable.
    It isn’t our government’s fault because our government is “By the People, Of the People, and For the People.” We are the ones who have created this monster and we are the ones who feed it. Every time we turn to the government to “fix our problems,” the government “fixes” it by homogenizing society – creating a blanket rule that applies to EVERYONE in EVERY SITUATION. And we hand over more of our personal freedom to be regulated by a remote governing body.
    I don’t know if we can back out of the hole we have dug for ourselves, but we have to try. Get involved. Educate yourself. Don’t be intimidated by suits.
    Don’t write on this forum, “Don’t pass CatX!” or, “I hope this doesn’t pass!” unless you really mean it. IF you really mean it, posting on this forum does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING – most people here agree with you – you have to write the FWS and your congressmen/women. Go to your pet stores and strike up a conversation. Put a notice on your Facebook page. GET THE WORD OUT! Call up your friends and give them the information so they can easily write FWS and their congressmen/women. Set up an exhibition at schools – kids have lots of energy and even under-aged kids’ letters are effective.

    If you don’t DO something, anything you are able, then don’t say you care about this issue.
    ~ Jeanjaz

  80. So, I realize this was last year’s issue, but like me, people do come and browse older blogs, and I hope they learn something from the comments.

    But, being new to the herp community – what was the end of this issue? Did CatX pass?

    ~ Jeanjaz

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