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Toronto's crazy law

James Purchase wrote:

>An aside - I've recently been made aware that the City of Toronto is
>considering a bylaw which would make it illegal for anyone to own tropic
>fish which have been collected from the wild:
>"Animals not indigenous to Canada that have been taken from the wild at any
>stage of development including eggs or embryos."
>Looks like I better hide my Cardinal Tetras because as I understand it a lot
>of them are still wild caught!

I beleive they are just about _all_ wild caught.  It _is_ possible to spawn
them of course, but commercially it is cheaper to collect them.  

You might want to point out to the city of Toronto that if anything is
likely to save the Amazon basin it might well be the ornamental fish
industry.  The local people have a way of supporting themselve other than
slash and burn farming, and it's a renewable resource.  Dr. Labbish Chou
and his "Project Piaba" have been studying the effects of collecting
cardinals and other fish from the Amazon basin for a number of years now,
and all signs point to the fact that these fish can be considered "annuals"
in the wild.  The numbers that are being collected annually at this point
have no long term effect on the wild population.

On tributaries of the Amazon, like Rio Xingu, the use of mercury in strip
mining is polluting the river so fast that any species that we do _not_
remove from the river and establish in captive populations are certainly
doomed to extinction.  

This is another case of animal rights people and or uninformed legislator
acting without engaging their brains.  CERTAINLY we want to avoid capture,
transport and sale of endangered and/or threatened species.  That's what
CITES is all about.  But unless native people have viable alternative
income, you will just encourage black market trade.  

And even without the harsh economic realities in Brazil, that's all Toronto
will be able to accomplish too... It will just mean that those Toronto-ites
who want cardinal tetras will go outside the city limits, buy them and
bring them home.  Unenforceable laws are bad laws.

Karen Randall