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Reptiles and Amphibians in the News

Monday, January 7, 2008

Turtle Amendment Passed?

I haven't really kept up on this, but the Natchez Democrat is reporting that the recently passed Farm, Nutrition and Bioenergy Act of 2007 (H.R. 2419) included an amendment repealing the small turtle sales ban (though noting there may be an effort to repeal the repeal). Turtle farms now process eggs to eradicate Salmonella (or some do, anyway; I'd like to see confirmation that all turtle farms do this). The process goes:

"Once the turtles start to lay their eggs on the levees around the turtle ponds, the eggs are gathered daily, and all dirt is removed from the eggs before they are soaked for 10 minutes in a water and Clorox solution.

"After that, they are cleaned in a commercial washer.
"'We run them through an egg washer manufactured for chicken eggs,' Evans said.
"Once washed, the eggs are placed in a special vacuum tank to eradicate any salmonella. After that, they are placed in incubation trays until they hatch, at which time a state veterinarian certifies they are salmonella free."

[Note: Here is the amendment in question, the Domestic Pet Turtle Equality Act.]

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