Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby manatok » Thu Sep 18, 2014 9:29 pm

I have been herping for the best part of twenty years and along with birding I would classify it was one of my favourite hobbies. It's not something that I take particularly seriously but when the opportunity arrises I will certainly see what critters I can find and photograph. I have planned a trip to a private farm near Augrabies in October and have decided to dedicate my efforts to photographing as many reptile and amphibian species as I can, which leads me onto a couple of questions that I was hoping you guys could shed some light on:

1. What information can be collected by amateur naturalists when catching reptiles and amphibians so that it can be sent to anyone interested for research purposes?
1.1 Surely there is a printable sheet out there somewhere that has a fill in the blanks approach, if not, what would I put on my sheet?
1.2 Where could one send such information?

2. I see the guys on the SARCA site used bucket and funnel traps quite effectively, what are the legalities and etiquette around using these? If I have the permission of the landowner is this enough to set traps on his land (with the intention of just photographing and releasing)

Thanks a mill
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby jka » Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:39 pm

Technically it is illegal for a private individual to collect samples (tissue & blood) and to capture and restrain wildlife depending on the specific province.

ADU Virtual museum offer a nice way for "citizen scientist" to contribute.
Then of course you can join HAA and write up interesting observation and get it published in the journal.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Viper_SA » Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:51 pm

jka wrote:Technically it is illegal for a private individual to collect samples (tissue & blood) and to capture and restrain wildlife depending on the specific province.


So this means technically a private individual is not allowed to remove, say a snake, from a neighbor's house?
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby jka » Fri Sep 19, 2014 1:56 pm

That is 100% correct technically you cant without a permit from your Nature department.

I had to apply, for my catch and release permit to legally remove problem animals. I also joined a research project, and this entitles me to sample specific species of snakes.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Viper_SA » Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:03 pm

It's only sad that FS has almost no support in this regard. A few years ago when applying for a permit to keep indigenous geckos the response I got was, "I'm not making a two hour drive to inspect a few geckos", just go ahead and keep them. Any pointers on where or whom to apply to fora catch and release permit in FS?
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby jka » Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:04 pm

Viper_SA wrote:It's only sad that FS has almost no support in this regard. A few years ago when applying for a permit to keep indigenous geckos the response I got was, "I'm not making a two hour drive to inspect a few geckos", just go ahead and keep them. Any pointers on where or whom to apply to fora catch and release permit in FS?


That is the problem we have, no man power or even simpler no drive to do their job!
Unfortunately I'm not sure where to contact the Free State's conservation body.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby manatok » Fri Sep 19, 2014 2:12 pm

Thank you for the feedback, I will go and have a look at those sites. On the HAA site I found a page: http://www.africanherpetology.org/permits.php that has some contact details for the various provinces but the number for the Northern Cape doesn't seem to exist anymore. I also tried the number listed on this page http://web.uct.ac.za/depts/bolus/consdep.html but it also seems to be incorrect.

Could you possibly give more information on the research project you were involved in or point me in the right direction so that I can possibly join one too?

I'm not sure if its a good or a bad thing that each province dictates the legalities but it certainly seems to confuse the issue.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Natcon NC » Tue Nov 11, 2014 10:19 am

Northern cape contact details are permit unit 053 8077476 ( Marietjie Smit) or Leon Muller 027 3418360 Compliance monitoring unit.

full contact details follow this link
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1a51 ... l6HFSo/pub
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Mellivora » Sat Nov 15, 2014 3:53 pm

Just an interesting aside.
I do not have a catch and release permit - too much red tape courses to attend and expense to renew annually.
A couple of years ago when I applied to renew my permit to keep indigenous snakes and tortoises two ladies from nature conservation for the first time paid me a visit to inspect my facilities.
In the 30 years at my current location I have probably encountered less than 1 snake per year.
The tortoise enclosure is about 50 meters from the house and between them is the swimming pool with a 4 foot brick wall around it.
Returning from the tortoise enclosure my worsies cornered a snouted cobra against the swimming pool's wall. I asked the ladies to keep an eye on him while I fetched my snake hook. Lo and behold 4 meters further another worsie had engaged a redlip which I quickly saved an placed in a container.
Returning with the hook I explained to the ladies that I did not have a catching permit and offered them the hook.
They both politely refused and I'm probably one of very few people that can say that they caught a wild snake without a permit in the presence of two nature conservation officials without being prosecuted.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Viper_SA » Sat Nov 15, 2014 4:54 pm

I suppose the bigger piture is that a snake's life is saved from a spade or whatever other implement people find.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Chopper 1 » Tue Nov 18, 2014 11:40 am

Mellivora, there are some real horror stories when it come to Nature Conservation and the actual conservation of nature! I have had the pleasure of working with some real top brass and a few of them had common sense when it came to your type of scenario, however i had many stories where the snake was killed because natcon would not do their part in conservation. One story comes to mind where i applied in the Limpopo province to keep a few black mamba's on permit - i was told that that is not a possibility at this time because there is a "memorandum" out on the keeping of reptiles (it seems that this excuse is often used when they are in doubt) - Lo and behold a few hours later i get a phone call from the same gentleman asking me to please remove a black mamba from a farmers shed near Kampersrus or it will be shot (i used to be the local snake remover for the Klaserie office when it came to large pythons and venomous species). I went and caught the mamba and asked the newly appointed nat con chappie if i could get a permit for this mamba as it was a dead snake had i not risked my life removing it...... the answer i received was obviously NO. I released the snake in Manyaleti but mention this as there is often very little common sense in some of the decisions that are made. And by the way this happened quite a number of years back before the more ridiculous system was in place...... there are still a few good guys who will listen to your side of the story and try and find a way to accommodate you but the majority look at the book and say there is no way it can be done because of this and this even though you both know it is because they have no interest in actually trying to help both you and conservation! I ask for permits once and then just do it anyway if they come with stories - simple really.
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Re: Etiquette, Legalities and Science

Postby Savu » Thu Nov 20, 2014 7:25 pm

Amen
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