The Exotic Pet Trade Explained and InformationKeith
The Exotic Pet Trade Explained
Every year millions of exotic animals are traded around the globe, destined for owners basements and backyards.
A Lot of this trade is legal, but numerous times animals are captured from the wild illegally to supply the demand for exotic pets.
People have kept exotic pets throughout history, but demand for unique creatures has boomed in recent years.
Many exotic pets are bred in captivity. Conservationists see captive breeding as a way to save wild animals from poaching for the pet trade, and many countries allow for the export of captive-bred creatures as long as the legal documents are obtained.
Investigators have discovered that people are laundering Indian star tortoises from Jordan, red-eyed tree frogs from Nicaragua, and many others.
The exotic pet business also affects humans and animals not even involved in the trade. Wild animals have the natural instinct to attack their owners or spread disease, such as ebola and SARS. An outbreak of exotic Newcastle disease (END), resulted in the deaths of 12 million birds in the U.S. in the 1970s, was traced to parrots smuggled out of South America.
The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), an international charter signed by 183 governments, has voted to ban and limit trade in many animal species usually sought after as pets. Many countries also ban domestic sales or possession of certain animals. In the United States laws regulating the ownership of exotic pets vary from state to state.