Suffolk SPCA to Hold "Amnesty Week" to Allow Pet Owners to Bring in Illegal Wildlife

Written by Long Island News & PR  |  06. May 2019

The Suffolk County SPCA, in cooperation with NYS Department of Environmental Conservation will be hosting an Amnesty Week for illegally possessed, protected, endangered and threatened animals that require special state DEC and Fish & Wildlife Permits. During Amnesty Week,  dangerous animals, exotics, illegal reptiles, amphibians and mammals can be surrendered without penalty. 
"The purpose of this effort is to get these illegally possessed animals into a controlled environment where they can be cared for properly," Chief Roy Gross said. "People who are in possession of these animals unlawfully can turn them in to us without fear of prosecution. No one will be asked to give their name."
"The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation is pleased to work with the Suffolk County SPCA to administer its an Amnesty Week," NYSDEC Acting Captain Tom Gadomski said. "Protected and dangerous species need specific care and individuals illegally keeping these animals as pets are at best, keeping native wildlife from breeding in natural habitats, and at worst, endangering themselves and others. Amnesty Day gives individuals the ability to anonymously surrender these animals before they become a danger."
Over the years many exotic, illegally, possessed animals and reptiles have been turned in or confiscated by the Suffolk County SPCA. Just last week, we received a call that an individual wished to turn in a smooth-fronted caiman, a crocodilian. The caiman was 27 inches long, very aggressive, and illegal to possess as a pet in New York State. The SPCA took custody so that the public would be protected and encourages others who have illegal pets to do the same.
During the Amnesty Week, individuals possessing these illegal animals can contact the Suffolk County SPCA or NYS Department of Environment Conservation to schedule an appointment to turn in these animals, no questions asked. Species that do not require permits, and/or are not threatened or endangered will not be accepted.
Location: Suffolk County SPCA
725 Veterans Memorial Highway, Bldg. 16
Date:  Monday, May 6th, 2019 to Friday, May 10th, 2019
Time: 10 am to 4 pm
To schedule an appointment, please call Suffolk County SPCA (631) 382-7722 or NYSDEC (631) 444-0250.

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