Maple Ridge veterinarian Dr. Adrian Walton with a dyeing blue frog that is legal to have as a pet in B.C. While it is a poison dart frog, they are only poisonous in the wild. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

Maple Ridge vet trying not to euthanize spotted salamanders

Without permits, he can only send them to zoos.

Asking Santa Claus for a frog or a spotted salamander for Christmas?

Maple Ridge veterinarian Dr. Adrian Walton wants you to know the rules about which is legal and illegal to have in the province.

Recently, he responded to a person’s query on Facebook about axolotls, a type of salamander, and wants to remind people that they are illegal to own in the province without a permit.

He said a large number of amphibians are illegal to own including all of the toads as well as all of the salamanders in the Ambystoma family.

While they are not considered controlled alien species under the B.C. Wildlife Act, according to the B.C. SPCA, they are designated as wildlife, which means that ownership of axolotls and tree frogs are restricted. They cannot be kept, sold, bred, trafficked or transported without a permit.

One of the biggest concerns with axolotls imported from elsewhere, notes Walton, is that they contain a fungus that can severely damage native species in the province.

RELATED: Burmese python put on one-way flight to Toronto

Walton said that if water from an axolotl fish tank gets into the water supply the fungus in, it has the potential to kill the native frog population.

Another concern are tree frogs imported from overseas. Walton said they carry what is called a chytrid fungus.

While he has diagnosed chytrid only two or three times within the past couple of years, he said there are sensitive species in the province, such as the Pacific tree frog, that would be at risk if in contact with this fungus.

Walton said that, for the most part, axolotls go unreported. But when they are discovered, they end up at his Maple Ridge clinic, where he tries his best to re-home them.

However, he can only send them to places that have wildlife permits.

“The only place I can legally send these are zoos and zoos are not going to want these things,” he said, meaning his only other option is to euthanize them.


 

cflanagan@mapleridgenews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

A dyeing blue frog that is legal to have as a pet in B.C. While it is a poison dart frog, they are only poisonous in the wild. (Colleen Flanagan/THE NEWS)

Just Posted

Letter: Allen Way rail crossing proposed in 1980

Pitt Meadows mayor at time wanted it at north Bonson.

Maple Ridge school hosts FIRST LEGO competition

Students build and program LEGO MINDSTORMS to find solutions to city landscape designs

Votto, Morneau want Hall of Fame recognition for Larry Walker

Larry Walker’s number will be retired on April 19 at Coors Field

Slideshow: Maple Ridge’s winter wonderland waterways

PHOTOS: Water and wildlife at the Alouette River, Fraser River and Whonnock Lake

Lottery charges against two Maple Ridge women dropped

New information leads Crown to stay proceedings

Should winter tires be mandatory in the Lower Mainland?

ICBC dial-a-claims go up as winter storm takes toll

Crown won’t appeal sentence in child sex assault case of former Burns Lake mayor

B.C. Prosecution Service said sentence doesn’t meet standard for appeal

Abbotsford bank ATM robbery thwarted by woman standing her ground

Police arrest alleged known robber running down South Fraser wearing balaclava

Kelowna’s ‘Baby Mary’ finds biological parents after more than 30 years

Geneologist and DNA test helped her connect with her biological parents

Fire truck, police car hit in chain of crashes on Hwy. 99

‘People weren’t paying attention,’ says Surrey assistant fire chief

B.C. offers $5 million equipment loan program to help ailing forest contractors

Local politicians in Port McNeill and Campbell River says local economies are struggling

Vancouver Island distillery wins award for best Canadian rye whisky

Shelter Point cleans up at Canadian Whisky Awards

Most Read