Secretary of the Interior, Ken Salazar, revealed on Jan. 20 that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) will propose listing the Burmese python and eight other constrictor snakes as “injurious wildlife” under the Lacey Act, thus prohibiting the importation and interstate trade of the invasive species.
“The Burmese python and these other alien snakes are destroying some our nation’s most treasured — and most fragile — ecosystems,” Salazar said in a statement. “The interior department and states, such as Florida, are taking swift and common sense action to control and eliminate the populations of these snakes, but it is an uphill battle in ecosystems where they have no natural predators. If we are going to succeed, we must shut down the importation of the snakes and end the interstate commerce and transportation of them.”
The nine species to be proposed for listing are: the Burmese python, northern African python, southern African python, reticulated python, green anaconda, yellow anaconda, Beni or Bolivian anaconda, DeSchauensee’s anaconda, and boa constrictor.
FWS is expected to make the proposal in early February. At that time, the service will also make a draft economic analysis and draft environmental analysis available to the public. Once the rule is proposed, the public will have 60 days to comment.
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