Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

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Postby Bushviper » Fri Nov 30, 2007 6:30 am

Iggy I cannot see any problems with this seeing as they will be captive bred stock from legal parents. If Mpumalanga will issue the export permits already then applications in Gauteng will not be a problem.

If the people are not members of a herp association then they will probably not be allowed to get hatchlings but have to get tortoises where the carapace is 15cm or longer when measured in a straight line under the shell.

You could apply now and if there are any problems then I will go and see them.

What was agreed upon was for non-members 1 tortoise per permit. Bigger than 15cm. No dogs or swimming pool where the tortoise is being kept. Escape proof enclosure where the tortoises will be kept.

For members. Decent escape proof enclosure. No more than 5 tortoises.
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Postby Iggy » Fri Nov 30, 2007 8:21 am

thats great, many thanks for the follow up and advice!
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Sat Mar 15, 2014 10:39 pm

Hi everyone, whatever happened to the speculation regarding the 1 leopard tortoise is legal rule change? Did it ever actually happen or do you still need a permit?
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby Bushviper » Sun Mar 16, 2014 8:25 am

You will always require a permit for any indigenous reptile in Gauteng. That will never change.
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:54 am

Ok so the reason I ask is because I know of someone who bought a tortoise from a "breeder" which I admit already sounds quite illegal. Now she realizes 4 months down the line that she knows absolutely nothing about tortoises or leopard tortoises for that matter and decided she cannot keep it. It's captive bred and it's a hatchling. Probably less than six months old. Naturally I would like to step in and take the little guy, but I fear his chances of survival in the "wild" are slim, being little and young. I also would want to release him into a truly wild area for fear if him turning squashed on the road or as a pet. The other thing to consider is that I could end up introducing some kind of desiese into a wild population. My other alternative is to keep him myself. The only problem with that is he has obviously never had a permit. If I decide to take the tortoise how would I make him legal??
"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -David Herbert Richards Lawrence
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Sun Mar 16, 2014 11:59 am

Of course the other alternative is to just keep him illegally. We all know how spectacularly poor or legal system is. But the truth is, these laws are written for the protection of our wildlife. Being a person who loves and appreciates our wildlife and despises the illegal trade in wildlife, it would be extremely hypocritical to take that approach. What would you guys do? Release, keep with permit, or just keep it illegally? I'm afraid of the permit application because what happens if natcon confiscates it when I inform them of the situation and want to know where I plan on getting him from?
"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -David Herbert Richards Lawrence
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Sun Mar 16, 2014 12:01 pm

Or do I just report the person to natcon and let them deal with it?
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Mon Mar 17, 2014 1:23 pm

so what are we thinking? need advice here... want to know what the right and responsible thing to do here. when I mean right and responsible, I mean in terms of the animals wellbeing.
"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -David Herbert Richards Lawrence
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby Westley Price » Mon Mar 17, 2014 2:23 pm

Of course we cannot condone keeping the animal illegally, but chances of getting a permit is very slim to none.

And releasing the animal is also irresponsible for the reasons you have mentioned, as well as many others.

So you have three options in my opinion:
- Keep the animal illegally and provide him a happy, comfortable, safe life,
- Take the animal to NatCon where he might be euthanized or donated to an institution,
- Donate him directly to a institution with the correct permits (snake park, zoo etc.) where he will likely be kept in a communal enclosure with a ton of other Leopards.
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Mon Mar 17, 2014 2:39 pm

is it really that difficult to get permits? I find this confusing. also, how is it that people can be breeding tortoises illegally, selling them illegally and marketing them and selling them and no authorities do anything about it? its very strange.
interestingly I find option 2 (the most obvious legal route) the most unattractive, and option 1 (the most illegal and probably selfish route) the most attractive.
Lets forget about this one tortoise for a while. do you think that it would be morally acceptable, correct, and environmentally conscious to find out who this breeder is and get his animals confiscated? provided of course natcon or whoever don't decide to euthanise? what do you think?
"I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself." -David Herbert Richards Lawrence
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby michael » Mon Mar 17, 2014 3:30 pm

I can’t believe that it is that difficult to get a permit for an indigenous tortoise in Gauteng. I would approach the authorities explain the situation. As for the “breeder” he is being irresponsible and breaking the law and damaging our hobby . Unfortunately once he is reported the future of his tortoise are in the hands of the authorities, euthanasia should be the very last option though. This is a tough one as I’m not 100% sure how the Provincial authorities handle things up there .
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby Bushviper » Tue Mar 18, 2014 9:25 am

Believe it or not you could approach Nature Conservation and explain the situation to them. They cannot prosecute you if you come forward with the animal and apply to keep it in writing. It is then up to them to decide whether they are going to take it or whether they will issue you with a permit. They have no real urge to take it and donate it to a zoo. If you have the correct facilities for the tortoise the chances are high that they will issue you with a permit.

I believe there is a moratorium on euthanasing healthy wildlife in any case so that is not likely.
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby mm069 » Tue Mar 18, 2014 2:38 pm

Great that's pretty much what I needed to hear. They won't euthanize. I have already contacted natcon to query about the permit. I sent an email as well which I will file and keep. Perhaps I will take possession of the animal and keep in mailing them to show my intention to do the legal thing. If they don't get back to me that's fine too. If they do, then the permit will surely follow, or I will at least get some kind of feedback from them. I do wish though, that these laws were a little more well thought out, allowing for prosecution of the bad people and taking consideration of the intentions of good people. I know it's not always that simple but we can dream can't we.
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby Creepy Critters » Tue Mar 18, 2014 7:04 pm

Finally a foot in the door ! Hopefully now only good things are to come off of this !
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Re: Good news about Leopard tortoises in Gauteng

Postby AnnAkaisaj » Thu Mar 05, 2015 10:30 am

Please keep us all posted about your progress with the permit. I am actually very curious of what is going to happen in your case
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