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Breeders for River Otters

Information on Breeders, brokers, and other dealers

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otterpop
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby otterpop » Tue Jan 15, 2013 8:48 am

Mary, I had a sinking feeling yesterday coming to that same thought-
sinking in that after I had picked apart everything in the regs, both from the Commission end and state statutes referenced, I think I am trapped inside the wrong end of a white list created after the fact. That the part concerns me the most is under the "grandfathering" clauses, including a transportation ban. (something that I will have serious trouble with I am afraid) Ex-post-facto laws is what may be the case here, a devestating prospect that is always lurking for anyone who posseses anything more 'exotic' than the usual fair from a pet store. icon-sad
I have to be serious about this because due to what I see are the SUBTILE changes in regulations may have stranded all my guys in their respective locations. Omisions, additions, and changes in wording during the many years that was hidden from me, that remove the legality in what once was legal. Akin to a similar effect essentially to a warrantless seizure....

I have been slowly building up the enclosure should I need that prohibited species permit, incase that is my only route.
That is because Thomas is habituated to a zoo enclosure and I want to have him living out his life in an equivilent habitat- house-otter or not.

In the meantime, i have a little positive response from my recent coversations with Fish and Wildlife, and I may be able to get a favorable resolution in time. The commission meets sometime in April, and I intend to have my case heard, I hope. I do need to be patient in this affair, as the welfare of one of my family members is in a precarious situation. Me being able to get another otter will mean that I will be able to KEEP my existing otters.
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby TamanduaGirl » Tue Jan 15, 2013 2:54 pm

Those darn subtle changes. The problem there is a few years ago a little noticed bill passed giving F&W free reign to change the animal laws as they see fit anytime they see fit no need for public vote. I've noticed those minor changes since then and it is most annoying. For example you used to be able to keep a Virginia opossum as long as it was from the wild as they are "not otherwise protected" but they realized that loophole was there and listed them as not being allowed to poses, used to just be prohibited to buy and import them). Similarly you could have raccoons and skunks long as from another state but now can get coons from any USDA but can't have skunks at all. Most annoying.

I know your current guy was supposed to be grandfathered. Hope everything turns out well there.
otterpop
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby otterpop » Wed Jan 16, 2013 4:16 am

It is good in a way to go into panic mode now and then.

Well, I called the department today- and what was said to me is that the classification list is meant for non-native species only (such as the Small-clawed Otter). As the Virginia Opossum is considered to be introduced (brought into oregon by human activities like Turkeys, Nutria, and English Sparrows, they were included in the classification lists (even though they exist in the wild). The term "Non-native wildlife" is peppered throughout this law, in some instances the part "non-native" is missing, leaving only the generic "wildlife" in place- perhaps that is an example of lax rules over the terminology, and making the rules in general misunderstood at times, when one is concerned with the differences between "native" and "non-native".
I was puzzled over omissions of animals from the classification lists such as raccoons, mink, some squirrels and other natives that are allowed to be "held" in captivity, (with permit, or not) are not even mentioned in these regulations. Even though the possession of these animals are clearly allowed by the same agency that created the prohibited and non-controlled lists.

The reason, is that these animals are the same species that existed in the state before European settlement.

Animals such as river otters that are "imported" into the state from other areas of the country are still regarded as "Native Species" by the department and as such are excluded from the "non-native" species lists.

What I was told today is that there have been little change to the laws that pertain to furbearers in general, at least where the out-of-state lawful purchase of river otters would be affected, since there was a major revision in 1996, which was before I was allowed to bring my two youngest otters into the state.

The commission will not classify the river otter, because it is regarded as being native. Nor the Raccoon, or Mink. I Did find the definition that describes a Commercial Fur farm to be a business that has at least 10 animals.

The loophole that I had been aware of years ago is still there, now I know why. One part (I'll say the "blacklist") of the law is centered upon the regulated uses of wildlife (fishing, hunting, trapping) in general- and that usually means that none can be held in captivity except by permit or otherwise allowed by law. The other part (has a "white list") concerns only the Exotic ('non-native wildlife") and domesticated animals that are dealt with on those classification lists. A "White list" If an animal is not on any of those lists (like the non-native small-clawed otter) that animal is automatically regarded as "prohibited" until the state gets around to classify it, or someone like me petitions the Commission to get the species classified.

it sounds weird, two different laws for two similar animals, one native, the other alien. It is what happens when laws get confusing, even for the people who are enforcing them.

So I MAY be in the clear in getting river otters, just the same as the last time. There is always a chance that the regulation can be tweeked with thus making importation and holding of River otters strictly unlawful, so I would still need to tread lightly... again as before.
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby otterpop » Wed Jan 16, 2013 5:23 am

Well, dang- I maxed out my character limit on my last post.

As continued:

The loophole I speak of is probably not intentional, but it exists because the department hasn't had the reason or desire to outright prohibit the keeping of game animals if there wasn't any pressing need to do so, such as controlling disease outbreaks, or any threat that the keeping of certain animals pose to the state in general (such as tame big cats roaming loose around the state)

Ok.

Next, This is the law that I had been worried over many times over the years- I became aware of the "transportation" and "transferred" parts of the law, something that in theory affected Thomas' eventual transfer and transportation from the museum back to my home, prohibited under this regulation, if he were really under the "unclassified" rule
-snip-
"
635-056-0150
Grandfathering
(1) A person who possessed a Prohibited wildlife species prior to the time the commission places the species on the Prohibited list, or an unclassified species if legally obtained prior to January 1, 2000, may continue to hold the animal(s) for the life of such animal(s), provided:
(a) The person has proof of legal possession prior to the listing (e.g., sales receipt, import permit from Oregon Department of Agriculture, or signed affidavit);
(b) The animal(s) and any offspring are not released, transported, imported, sold, purchased, exchanged, offered for sale, purchase or exchange, or otherwise transferred within the state; and
(c) The person abides by all regulations outlined in OAR 635-056-0110.
(2) A Prohibited wildlife species legally held in compliance with the requirements of subsection (1) of this rule may be sold or exchanged provided that the animal is directly and permanently transported out of Oregon.
"

-end snip-

I see no specific reference to "non-native wildlife" here- just "wildlife" makes it sound as if this means ALL wildlife species that are not classifed. I do see the "import permit" clause (what my guys have), but nothing as to any other permit or otherwise exemption. (All those raccoons possessed with a holding permit -the most recent that I am aware of was initially issued in 2006. six years beyond after the grandfathering deadline- issued by the director seem illegal according to here.
But they are not, because even though every raccoon lawfully held under these permits are from outside the state and thereby imported, they fall under "native wildlife".) Hmmm.

But I was reassured that this is not the case, as Thomas too, is not considered a "non-native" species. So he is legal, both while at the museum, and my home, and everywhere in between for instance.

There are many other interesting peices of regulations that have interested me. One is this:

-snip-
"
635-044-0015
Wildlife Which Cannot Be Captured and Held
Except as provided in these rules, no game mammal, furbearer, striped skunk (Mephitis mephitis), western spotted skunk (Spilogale gracilis), native bat, or coyote (Canis latrans) may be captured and held in captivity, except as authorized by the director. Fox (Vulpes vulpes) or Urocyon cinereoargenteus) may be held by a commercial fur farm as defined in OAR 635-056-0010. No game bird may be captured and held in captivity except that members of the families Tetranidae and Phasianidae may be captured and held as authorized by the director. No game fish may be captured and held in captivity except as authorized by the director. No species of nongame wildlife declared protected by the commission under OAR 635-044-0130 may be captured and held except northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus), chickaree (Douglas’s squirrel and red squirrel) (Tamiasciurus douglasii and T. hudsonicus), golden-mantled ground squirrel (Spermophilus lateralis), and chipmunk (Tamias amoenus, T. miniumus, T. senex, T. siskiyou and T. townsendii). No migratory bird or mammal protected by federal law may be captured and held without first securing a federal permit. A federal permit will serve in lieu of a state
Wildlife Holding Permit for birds protected by the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act and mammals protected by federal law.
"
-end snip-

The part that says "....no game mammal, furbeared, striped skunk.....may be captured and held in captivity..." means that nobody is allowed to trap and keep as a pet any of these animals.

Just above is this:
-snip-
"
2 - Div. 044
635-044-0005
Permit Required to Hold Wildlife
Any person desiring to capture and hold any northern flying squirrel (Glaucomys sabrinus), chickaree (Douglas’s squirrel and red squirrel) (Tamiasciurus douglasii and T. hudsonicus), golden-mantled ground squirrel (Spermophilus lateralis), or chipmunk (Tamias amoenus, T. minimus, T. senex, T. siskiyou and T. townsendii), or to hold any raccoon (Procyon lotor), or bobcat (Lynx rufus) must first secure a Wildlife Holding Permit by applying on a form provided to the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. The application shall list the species and numbers to be captured or otherwise acquired, the source or proposed area of capture, the date of application, and the name, address, and signature of applicant. Any application may be denied by the director for cause.
"
-end snip-

The part that here that says "...or to hold any raccoon..." pertains to that holding permit that allows a person to buy a raccoon from out of state and import it into Oregon. There are several animals that are prohibited from importing or possessing in the state, and they are identified by species, such as native foxes, except for furfarms, native big cats and bears, skunks, and the like. Species such as mink are reffered only as reference to fur farms, otherwise mink from out of state may too be like River Otters. No other prohibition exists in law. Of course there is nothing stopping the commission adding these particular species to their classification lists ,by saying "or any native species that originated from a out-of-state domestic source. But then that woukld pose a problem for mink farmers who wish to improve genetic diversity from other stock form outside the state. So maybe they would get an exemption... But this is why I bet the state hasn't bothered to deal with- there isn't much cause to make them spend additional time and resources to make more laws that like these. (unlike a state like California, which made everything illegal unless specified by law.)

About ten years ago, a very serious issue stemmed from the interpretation of the first of the last two laws above. (the one for "635-044-0015 Wildlife Which Cannot Be Captured and Held") I couldn't convince the local top game warden in my original home area that the word "and" in "capture and hold" did not mean "or", as the official had insisted. Him meaning that the law also prohibited even the simple holding of an animal, such as after buying it from a legal source, as well as trapping one for a pet.
I got the idea that the local office was very against someone like me having pet otters, and about two weeks later getting a visit from two officers sent 150 miles to the west to my mom's house, to verify that I indeed had the otters legally (there was no record of any paperwork in their office) and to tell me that they had concluded that my guys were legal if I still had the original import permit, (along with a bill of sale) showing that I bought them from a legal (licenced) source.

Long story short, unless the law is very specific about what you can do and what you can have there will always be uncertainty. Let alone, any change in the law that will at least give you a series of sleepless nights, or a sudden urge to relocate, apart from really facing a more serious crisis, such as an unannounced non-cordial visit.

I will run out of character space again if I don't stop typing. I can continue sometime later here. I also should repeat this elsewherev on the board, as I have obviously drifted from the original post. But Relevent yes, very important yes, especially when completing a successful interstate transaction with any River Otter breeder.

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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby otterpop » Wed Jan 16, 2013 6:12 am

Footnote-

I got called back yesterday by that breeder in Ohio- He may have a few otters yet available now. he is in the process of getting more otters next week. he is getting them from live trappers in Louisiana, and has also had some born in captivity. He has had at least one for several years of what i understand. i didn't talk with him for too long, I was mostly trying to get a "feel" if he was both legit and sincere. I told him that I was interested in getting either babies or adults, although I wasn't yet fully informed of my legal aspects right then. He says he has been supplying otters to zoos, so he may be ethical if true. His prices seem reasonable (at least to me for live, healthy otters). he has been doing otters for only about five years. he does shows with elk? on the side, so he is in quite deep with animal stuff.

He had a real good idea of leaving the female otters mostly alone to themselves when they were about to have babies, that way there is better success with survivability. He said that he can ship out of Ohio, he says they charge an average of $300. to ship. He seems he may also open to other arangements (perhaps meeting/buying in person).
I told him that most of the females he would get in the winter would definately be alreay pregnant with the following springs' babies, most of which are born between the latter half of February and the first half of march, being from Louisiana. I briefed him a bit about my own experience (apart from all the mushiness about living with otters).
Other than here I have never heard of the guy before, but hopefully this will help alittle.

I was able to get several references about the Sevins in Louisiana (otter people and suppliers from the 80's and 90's) before I had approached them about aquiring an otter (Benjamin). But right now at least this is a possible lead. I wish I were closer- I could scope them out before making a decision of buying from him or not.
(Anybody here in close distance to Ohio?) If anyone here needs to have his address, (a P.O. box) I can send it by PM.

Legally for me, I may be in the clear. but as i said before i can wait a bit more. I am still planning on getting the business of getting Small claws legal in my state as well, then I can work with both species if I should want to. If a river otter becomes available at once, right now travel to Ohio is tricky at best.
My enclosure is NOT ready for unfamiliar river otters ready to look for escape- I need to finish a few tasks before I seal off the remaining currently unsecured portion of fence, which will also serve as a double-door entry.

good night all.

otterpop
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby TamanduaGirl » Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:51 pm

It does look good for otters then. You do need a permit for a raccoon though no matter where you buy it from. It used to read that raccoons were illegal to buy,sell,trade in the state leaving buying out of state legal. Now they are legal long as from a USDA breeder in or out of state. But it used to allow out of state for skunks but now not at all.

The Wildlife Holding Permit is used to authorize capture and holding of the following species:
Northern flying squirrels, golden-mantled ground squirrels, Douglas’s squirrel, red squirrel, and chipmunks. It is also used to authorize holding of captive bred raccoon and bobcat from a USDA licensed facility. The Wildlife Holding Permit applies to these species only. (OAR 635-044-0005)


Mink are regulated under the fur farm rule along with native foxes but your right the fur reg does say captured and held rather than captured or held so could make buying one legal. It will be interesting to see how this works out for you as that would make a lot more native things legal, like opossums(if from the wild) and ringtails(if bought and imported) If a single red fox didn't need a fur farm permit that would be of great interest to many as well.

So it will be very interesting to see how it all goes for you but does look promising.
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby Viltor » Wed Jan 30, 2013 3:29 am

Very interesting. I had never even thought of owning an otter before... I always thought they were adorable, but...

Gah, this board is terrible in some ways! I started out thinking "I just want a fox"
Now I want Foxes, exotic cats, wolfdogs, otters, *goes on for an hour*
JessicaRe
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby JessicaRe » Thu Aug 25, 2016 3:30 pm

Do you still have the contact information for the breeder in Ohio? How did that work out for you?

otterpop wrote:Footnote-

I got called back yesterday by that breeder in Ohio- He may have a few otters yet available now. he is in the process of getting more otters next week. he is getting them from live trappers in Louisiana, and has also had some born in captivity. He has had at least one for several years of what i understand. i didn't talk with him for too long, I was mostly trying to get a "feel" if he was both legit and sincere. I told him that I was interested in getting either babies or adults, although I wasn't yet fully informed of my legal aspects right then. He says he has been supplying otters to zoos, so he may be ethical if true. His prices seem reasonable (at least to me for live, healthy otters). he has been doing otters for only about five years. he does shows with elk? on the side, so he is in quite deep with animal stuff.

He had a real good idea of leaving the female otters mostly alone to themselves when they were about to have babies, that way there is better success with survivability. He said that he can ship out of Ohio, he says they charge an average of $300. to ship. He seems he may also open to other arangements (perhaps meeting/buying in person).
I told him that most of the females he would get in the winter would definately be alreay pregnant with the following springs' babies, most of which are born between the latter half of February and the first half of march, being from Louisiana. I briefed him a bit about my own experience (apart from all the mushiness about living with otters).
Other than here I have never heard of the guy before, but hopefully this will help alittle.

I was able to get several references about the Sevins in Louisiana (otter people and suppliers from the 80's and 90's) before I had approached them about aquiring an otter (Benjamin). But right now at least this is a possible lead. I wish I were closer- I could scope them out before making a decision of buying from him or not.
(Anybody here in close distance to Ohio?) If anyone here needs to have his address, (a P.O. box) I can send it by PM.

Legally for me, I may be in the clear. but as i said before i can wait a bit more. I am still planning on getting the business of getting Small claws legal in my state as well, then I can work with both species if I should want to. If a river otter becomes available at once, right now travel to Ohio is tricky at best.
My enclosure is NOT ready for unfamiliar river otters ready to look for escape- I need to finish a few tasks before I seal off the remaining currently unsecured portion of fence, which will also serve as a double-door entry.

good night all.

otterpop
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby Kaleerose11 » Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:45 pm

https://www.facebook.com/northamericanriverotters/

Richard english river otters. In business for 11 years and still on going.
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Peacefulward
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby Peacefulward » Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:21 am

Kaleerose11 wrote:https://www.facebook.com/northamericanriverotters/

Richard english river otters. In business for 11 years and still on going.


Oh wow, I haven't seen a breeder specializing in otters. I'll have to message him and ask all about their husbandry.

Thanks for the info. Not interested in getting an otter myself but I always love learning about the care of new animals.
5 Dogs, 2 cats, 2 leopard geckos, 1 guinea pig, 1 axolotl, and a coatimundi currently in my family. :)

Exotic "wishlist": red fox, arctic fox, gray fox, bat eared fox, fennec fox, mink, muntjac deer, owl (any species).
otterpop
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Re: Breeders for River Otters

Postby otterpop » Fri Sep 22, 2017 6:37 am

Thank You! His old phone number was disconnected- good to see he is still doing the otters. I was able to bring up the text portion of his facebook page and saw his phone number was changed. (still has the same PO box). I will give him a call sometime.

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