Exotic Pet Amnesty Day at UF - April 16th!

The University of Florida's Department of Wildlife Ecology and Conservation, in collaboration with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) will be hosting its first ever "Pet Amnesty Day" (http://myfwc.com/wildlifehabitats/nonnatives/amnesty-day-events/ )on Tuesday, April 16, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m. Unwanted exotic pets (e.g., snakes, turtles, birds, fish, mammals, etc.-no dogs or cats) may be surrendered with no questions asked. Surrendered pets will be placed in adoptive homes with individuals approved by the FWC. "Pet Amnesty Days" were created by FWC in an attempt to "minimize the effects exotics have on Florida's native fish, wildlife and marine species." Non-native species can have negative impacts on native species, and can cause economic damage and threaten human health.  Surrender exotic pets at the Straughn Center (2142 Shealy Dr., Gainesville, FL 32611; across the street from the UF Vet School Small Animal Hospital). There are no penalties for surrendering unlicensed or illegal exotic pets. This event is free and open to the public-parking restrictions at the Straughn Center (http://straughn.ifas.ufl.edu/contact.shtml#getting ) will be lifted for the day.  Please join us in our efforts in stopping the release of non-native pets!

We need more people to apply to adopt the animals turned in during the event! If you are interested in being a certified adopter please go to this FWC website (http://myfwc.com/wildlifehabitats/nonnatives/nonnative-pet-adopter/ ) and complete the online form.

In conjunction with the surrender and adoption of animals at UF's Straughn Center, we are also conducting an education and outreach event at the Reitz Union the same day. See live exotic animals up close at the Reitz Union colonnade, and talk to experts about being a responsible pet owner.