(Photo supplied: Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary Society)

Catching reptiles and amphibians puts species at risk, Saanich nature sanctuary warns

Collecting and keeping native animals against the law, group says

The days of catching tadpoles and lizards at the pond are over, according to a Saanich nature sanctuary.

The Swan Lake Christmas Hill Nature Sanctuary Society issued a news release this week, warning the public of the dangers of removing reptiles and amphibians from their natural habitats.

“Our reptile and amphibian populations are small, fragmented and over half of these species in the province are at risk of becoming endangered,” the group wrote. “Therefore, it is imperative that every individual remains healthy and a part of the breeding population.”

The group noted it isn’t a zoo or rehabilitation facility.

Native wildlife does not thrive in captivity and the sanctuary stressed it does not endorse collecting and keeping native animals.

“It is actually against the law, as outlined in the Wildlife Act, and you can receive a fine from a Conservation Officer no matter how well intentioned you are.”

READ ALSO: New virgin queen headlines ‘Bee Day’ at Saanich sanctuary

Anyone who has illegally collected an animal without a permit should return the animal to where they found it, according to the sanctuary. Releasing the reptile or amphibian in a different area is stressful on the animal, because of competition with others for space, food and shelter.

The only exception to the rule is if the animal has been in contact with a pet store or aquarium products.

“Pet stores and aquariums are common vectors for disease transmission and any animal that has been exposed to pet store/aquarium food or supplies cannot be released back into the wild and risk infecting the entire population,” the nature sanctuary wrote.

The B.C. Frogwatch program can provide more guidance to anyone who believes, or is worried, a reptile or amphibian has been in contact with a pet store or with aquarium products.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Just Posted

Western Speedway racing legend ‘The Flying Plumber’ turns 98

Dave Cooper recalls car crashes, his first win, and more

Second puppy killed by poisonous mushrooms in Victoria

Springer spaniel puppy died after consuming mushrooms in Fairfield neighbourhood

Driver charged in Central Saanich pedestrian’s death appears in court

Victim Kim Ward, 51, died on scene at the August 2018 crash

Langford homeowner helps West Shore RCMP catch car thief

The homeowner grabbed the suspect until the police arrived moments later

Nuisance tree will remain on perimeter of Fireman’s Park

Council re-affirm pledge to protecting healthy tree canopy

WATCH: Greater Victoria’s top stories of the day

A round-up of the day’s top stories

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

Woman, 24, faces life-altering injuries after being dragged 4 blocks by vehicle in Vancouver

A gofundme account says the woman will have to undergo multiple complex surgeries

Fatal overdoses down by 33% in B.C., but carfentanil deaths continue to spike

Carfentanil, an illicit drug more powerful than fentanyl, causing more deaths than ever

Two RCMP vehicles vandalized in Duncan over long weekend

Local Mounties asking for help in finding culprits

A year after pot legalization in Canada, it’s a slow roll

It’s one year into Canada’s experiment in legal marijuana, and hundreds of legal pot shops have opened

ELECTION 2019: Climate strikes push environment to top of mind for federal leaders

Black Press Media presents a three-part series on three big election issues

Most Read