TX HB1788 becomes law...

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infidel
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TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by infidel » June 18th, 2011, 1:09 pm

While Gov. Perry did not sign HB1788 today, he had until the 19th to do so (veto or sign into law) The 19th is on a Sunday so since he took no action, it becomes law next week. While I'm no great fan of the way this new law is written, its a start. IF TP&WL decides to interprate "artificial lights" to include vehicle headlights, we'll see them again next session and the next and the next until this is fixed.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by chad ks » June 18th, 2011, 1:40 pm

I think it's clear given the language of the law that only spotlighting from a vehicle is restricted:
The bill would amend portions of the Parks and Wildlife Code to establish a reptile and amphibian hunting stamp. With the purchase of a hunting license and the new stamp, an individual is permitted to capture (without using a trap) indigenous reptiles or amphibians by non-lethal means, including capturing on a shoulder of a road or unpaved area of a public right-of-way, under certain conditions. An individual would be prohibited from using a spotlight from a motor vehicle in capturing a reptile or amphibian. The bill would exempt persons performing activities related to operation and maintenance of pipelines or to oil or gas exploration or production or employees of certain utilities who capture and subsequently release reptiles or amphibians from hunting license and stamp requirements.

The bill would require the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission to adopt rules, along with the form, design and manner of stamp issuance by March 1, 2012. The stamp fee would be $10 and valid for a state fiscal year, except for the first year when the fee will be prorated from the date of initial issuance to the end of the fiscal year. The bill would take immediate effect if the bill receives two-thirds the vote of all members in both houses. Otherwise, the bill would take effect September 1, 2011.
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/Search/D ... ightType=1

...so then it's pretty much going to be in effect very soon you say? What about printing the stamps?

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by infidel » June 18th, 2011, 3:54 pm

chad ks wrote:I think it's clear given the language of the law that only spotlighting from a vehicle is restricted:
The bill would amend portions of the Parks and Wildlife Code to establish a reptile and amphibian hunting stamp. With the purchase of a hunting license and the new stamp, an individual is permitted to capture (without using a trap) indigenous reptiles or amphibians by non-lethal means, including capturing on a shoulder of a road or unpaved area of a public right-of-way, under certain conditions. An individual would be prohibited from using a spotlight from a motor vehicle in capturing a reptile or amphibian. The bill would exempt persons performing activities related to operation and maintenance of pipelines or to oil or gas exploration or production or employees of certain utilities who capture and subsequently release reptiles or amphibians from hunting license and stamp requirements.

The bill would require the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission to adopt rules, along with the form, design and manner of stamp issuance by March 1, 2012. The stamp fee would be $10 and valid for a state fiscal year, except for the first year when the fee will be prorated from the date of initial issuance to the end of the fiscal year. The bill would take immediate effect if the bill receives two-thirds the vote of all members in both houses. Otherwise, the bill would take effect September 1, 2011.
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/Search/D ... ightType=1

...so then it's pretty much going to be in effect very soon you say? What about printing the stamps?
As per the text of the law, if it receives 2/3rds' vote (which it did), it goes into effect immediately. The problem is by definition, that makes ALL herping in Texas illegal until they come out with a stamp or endorsement. TP&WL can however go by the "spirit" of the intent of the law and allow herping (administratively) with a hunting license until they come out with a stamp/endorsement. I'm guessing we'll get word from TP&WL soon how they intend to approach this. They should be sending out legislative updates to their field wardens soon. So maybe you guys with Warden buddies in W. Texas might hear something soon. we'll see.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by chris_mcmartin » June 18th, 2011, 5:57 pm

I hope everyone herping West Texas this year (assuming the interpretation will be that, while waiting for the stamp, road cruising/walking cuts is going to be OK for this season) inundates poor Andy G with observations and other records of academic note. We need to show that we're not all rapacious commercial collectors as The Opposition would have the public believe.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Shane_TX » June 18th, 2011, 6:34 pm

Regarding the stamp, will it really be that much of a pain to incorporate on September 1st? Does a painting have to be commissioned first even though the legality is electronic? Out of curiosity, is it legal to shine for any type of wildlife?

Shane

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by infidel » June 18th, 2011, 7:04 pm

Shane_TX wrote:Regarding the stamp, will it really be that much of a pain to incorporate on September 1st? Does a painting have to be commissioned first even though the legality is electronic? Out of curiosity, is it legal to shine for any type of wildlife?

Shane
IF its nothing more than an endorsement, then it would only be an addition in the computer, IE: no actual stamp.
Shining: On foot yes, from a vehicle, no..

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by infidel » June 18th, 2011, 7:13 pm

chris_mcmartin wrote:I hope everyone herping West Texas this year (assuming the interpretation will be that, while waiting for the stamp, road cruising/walking cuts is going to be OK for this season) inundates poor Andy G with observations and other records of academic note. We need to show that we're not all rapacious commercial collectors as The Opposition would have the public believe.
Totally agreed. This us v. them HAS to stop at some point and cooperation has to come from both sides. At some point, some herpers gave all herpers a bad name. Unfortunately for some reason there are a couple of folks in TP&WL who do not have the ability to differentiate between poachers, commercial collectors and hobbyists and lack the desire to accept there IS a difference. For some reason, they CAN differentiate between deer hunters and deer poachers (who shoot deer from public roads), sport fishermen and gill netters, etc.. Maybe the money in the equation is the big difference.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Lloyd Heilbrunn » June 18th, 2011, 8:00 pm

Great! Good job guys, might have visit Texas again next year.....

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by chrish » June 18th, 2011, 8:10 pm

Kudos to all those who worked so hard on this.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Paul White » June 18th, 2011, 8:17 pm

w00t!!!!!!!!!!!

I'mma buy a stamp as soona s availble. Hopefully next yeatt the weather will be better and i can put it to som use and roadcruise to effect. this year itsbee n pretty much worthless to try to roadcruise. granted i think mine has been legal laredy since I don't collect but still.

Hell I meay even collect a king ortwo; our locla ones are damn pretty and i'd lkinda like a locale breeding colony.'

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 18th, 2011, 9:07 pm

Good news and good work. Thanks to all who worked so hard on this. It is still legal to shine artifical lights for invertebrates as TPWD considers wildlife to be vertebrate species as per the regs: “(1) "Wildlife" means all species of wild mammals, birds, fish, reptiles, or amphibians.”

and

Sec. 62.005. HUNTING WITH LIGHT. Except as provided by Section 62.0055 or 62.0056, no person may hunt a game animal or bird protected by this code with the aid of an artificial light that casts or reflects a beam of light onto or otherwise illuminates the game animal or bird, including the headlights of a motor vehicle."

Inverts are not "game animals" as per the defintion in the regs for game animals.

There are some undefined terms in the regulations like "wild animal" but again TPWD doesn't regulate terrestrial invertebrates as per TPWD press release, policy up to this point and their definition of "wildlife" above. Also a hunting license is not required to collect invertebrates.

Here is the reg:

Sec. 62.0031. HUNTING FROM PUBLIC ROAD OR RIGHT-OF-WAY PROHIBITED. (a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a person may not hunt a wild animal or bird when the person is on a public road or right-of-way.”

And by the way, many hobbyists would be considered "commercial collectors" or supporting commercial collection by buying wild caught feeder lizards and snakes, directly selling wild caught animals including "gas money snakes" and picking up a pair of subocs to "trade" with their buddy. As trading is considered a commercial activity in Texas. Not to mention anyone producing and offering for sale CB offspring has to possess the Commercial Nongame Permit. There are all kinds of ways folks try to "justify" not being commercial and only hobbyists when in fact they are technically commercial.

Welkerii
El Paso, TX

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BChambers
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 19th, 2011, 7:54 am

Great work and all those who put in time and money toward this cause, especially (but not exclusively) HCU and its members, are to be congratulated. It's been a long, frustrating four years. Now let's work hard to make sure we are good citizens out there on the Texas roads and rights-of way. We should all make it clear in any LE encounters that we are (99 % of us) hobbyists only, and no one is making money on snake collecting. I like to take the time to point out the impossibility of an alterna hunter even hoping to break even, given the cost of gas alone, let alone lodging, food and time :roll: ... In fact I had a very polite and productive conversation to this effect with a (obviously misinformed by his superiors) young warden in west Texas last week. He was amazed to hear that many-perhaps the majority- of us rarely if ever collect a snake.

A couple points: First, there should be no problem going right out and walking cuts etc, since the law stipulates that it goes into effect "immediately on passage". The "Herp Stamp" provision cannot be enforced until TPW actually implements a stamp purchase option.

Second and to be clear-only shining lights FROM A VEHICLE is banned under the law-you can walk the roadsides with a light all you want. No need at all to invoke/hide behind the "invertebrate loophole".

Finally, don't forget your reflective vest-that part of the law can and I'm sure will be enforced immediately.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 20th, 2011, 4:15 am

If you are hunting invertebrates then by all means continue the legal activity of doing so from a vehicle with a light at night. Also, I would say that the "majority" don't collect a snake statement is a load of BS. Most herpers in west Texas collect. Just because you don't collect a snake doesn't mean a "majority" do the same. There are hognose hunters, lepidus hunters, alterna hunters, celanops hunters, annulata hunters, suboc hunters, pictigaster hunters, baird's hunters, invert hunters, banded gecko hunters, atrox hunters, lizard hunters, etc. And many folks catch several of these species each trip. And some take every one of their target species they find. Some catch non-target species to help off set gas costs. Let's be real. It really doesn't matter how many or which species are collected in west Texas because of the small number of total herpers combined with the small sum total of specimens harvested each year is negligible at best. Not to mention the fact that there are very few roads running through this vast area of habitat. This is what should be told to LE and TPWD. Road and cut collecting is sustainable in west Texas, period. Happy hunting!

Welkerii

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 20th, 2011, 4:44 am

It doesn't matter how sustainable commercial collecting is-the reason the road ban law passed in the first place was that a couple of the higher ups in TPW LE were able to sell the "narrative" (that every snake hunter in the Trans-Pecos was getting rich by catching and selling rare reptiles) to the legislature and to others in TPW. Five minutes talking to any w. Texas warden or any of the involved legislators will tell you that. But the FACT is that you can count REAL commercial collectors in this state on the fingers of one hand ;)

It may soothe some folk's conscience to play word games with the word "commercial", but the fact is 99% of herpers in Texas NEVER sell a wild-caught reptile or amphibian. And it's vitally important that TPW and our legislators understand that.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by SeaAggie » June 20th, 2011, 6:10 am

chris_mcmartin wrote:I hope everyone herping West Texas this year (assuming the interpretation will be that, while waiting for the stamp, road cruising/walking cuts is going to be OK for this season) inundates poor Andy G with observations and other records of academic note. We need to show that we're not all rapacious commercial collectors as The Opposition would have the public believe.

Here's my slight (very slight) concern, and I'm quoting this post because it states it - the passage of this law does not allow 'road cruising' as a legal hunting form. Only walking the cuts, and collection on the "shoulder" or "unpaved public right of way." I hope people respect this, at least in the beginning, as disregarding this part might be thrown back in our faces in the form of TP&W going back to the legislation next time and telling them the 'gave 'em an inch, took a mile' story. This IS a victory, albeit a compromise, for the herp community. We need to pay our fees, smile, and accept the law as it is - even if it's not ideal - and show what responsible PAYING customers we can be. Then next session we can work on getting it to be okay to road-cruise as well. JMHO.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Gluesenkamp » June 20th, 2011, 6:41 am

chris_mcmartin wrote:I hope everyone herping West Texas this year (assuming the interpretation will be that, while waiting for the stamp, road cruising/walking cuts is going to be OK for this season) inundates poor Andy G with observations and other records of academic note. We need to show that we're not all rapacious commercial collectors as The Opposition would have the public believe.

Aww, thanks Chris. I will try to find out what the plan is for the short-term and get back to y'all. Meanwhile, feel free to inundate me with field data. Also, I can send a list of tracked species if anyone would liek to PM me.

Andy

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by chris_mcmartin » June 20th, 2011, 11:29 am

Gluesenkamp wrote:
chris_mcmartin wrote:I hope everyone herping West Texas this year (assuming the interpretation will be that, while waiting for the stamp, road cruising/walking cuts is going to be OK for this season) inundates poor Andy G with observations and other records of academic note. We need to show that we're not all rapacious commercial collectors as The Opposition would have the public believe.

Aww, thanks Chris. I will try to find out what the plan is for the short-term and get back to y'all. Meanwhile, feel free to inundate me with field data. Also, I can send a list of tracked species if anyone would liek to PM me.

Andy
Any plans to make the herp-related areas of the TPWD web site a little more robust/existent? :) Is there a concern with some of the species tracked which requires only PMing the info?

Unfortunately I won't be partaking in any inundating myself this season, as I'm leaving the country for an extended period. But speaking of inundating, the Missouri River's about to flood one of my survey sites up here in KS. :(

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Gluesenkamp » June 20th, 2011, 11:53 am

Well, there are bigger issues with our website than the lack of herps.... Given the current budget situation (slightly worse than horrible), I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for new herp pages to appear on our website. Re. PMs: I said that so we don't hog up all the public bandwidth with stuff that only a few may be interested in. I can e-mail a list of tracked species and a suggested field form to anyone who's interested. This, in addition to stamp sales, is the best way to demonstrate the magnitude of herper dedication.
Herp On!
AGG

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Paul White » June 20th, 2011, 12:16 pm

IIRC I only have the horned lizards/box turtls up here for tracking.

Yeah the TPWD has a weak webpage. But it's not that bad compared against other state's, which is sad. California's is horrid, so is New Mexico's. And yeah our budget SUCKS. My workload has gone about 40% with no real raise because of it :( Texas is running at like a 30% deficit.

And plus 1 for the e-form for horned lizards/box turtles. Not having one is just horrible. If TPWD wants data it needs to make it easy to give them data. It's like one of the guys I worked for as a kid says: "If I want you to give me your money, I need to make it EASY for you to give me your money."

Andy, will be kind enough to post up here when the stamps go on sale? I don't know if I should expect 'em this season or not.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by infidel » June 20th, 2011, 2:03 pm

Gluesenkamp wrote:Well, there are bigger issues with our website than the lack of herps.... Given the current budget situation (slightly worse than horrible), I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for new herp pages to appear on our website. Re. PMs: I said that so we don't hog up all the public bandwidth with stuff that only a few may be interested in. I can e-mail a list of tracked species and a suggested field form to anyone who's interested. This, in addition to stamp sales, is the best way to demonstrate the magnitude of herper dedication.
Herp On!
AGG
Andy, we have a plethora of nerds in this hobby, some who do good website work. Maybe we could put our collective heads together and create an e-form fill-able on this site or another site of YOUR choice and the submit button goes directly to an email account of your choice. A link could be put up on the site for submissions along with the list of animals of interest. I think either this site (due to the volume and assuming Scott is in approval) or Gerald's site would be perfect. It would accomplish getting your submissions AND include herpers in a TP&WL project. I think the state, specifically TP&WL with its budget woes could greatly benefit from tapping into the nerd pool for help, Cost: nada. The best thing is, everyone would enjoy helping.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 21st, 2011, 2:21 am

“It doesn't matter how sustainable commercial collecting is-the reason the road ban law passed in the first place was that a couple of the higher ups in TPW LE were able to sell the "narrative" (that every snake hunter in the Trans-Pecos was getting rich by catching and selling rare reptiles) to the legislature and to others in TPW. Five minutes talking to any w. Texas warden or any of the involved legislators will tell you that. But the FACT is that you can count REAL commercial collectors in this state on the fingers of one hand

It may soothe some folk's conscience to play word games with the word "commercial", but the fact is 99% of herpers in Texas NEVER sell a wild-caught reptile or amphibian. And it's vitally important that TPW and our legislators understand that.”

As usual Chambers can’t see past his blinders. It does matter that Texas herpers collect in a sustainable manner. This fact is why we should be allowed to do what we do. It doesn’t matter whether you collect for yourself or sell everything you catch as long as it is sustainable. I will agree that there are way more hobbyist or recreational collectors in Texas thus they take more of certain species in aggregate then commercial folks. Thus they have a bigger impact. This is why it is wise to be honest about what you do and document this with TPWD so they can manage the resource. It would also be wise to educate TPWD and the legislators to the fact that we are not becoming rich collecting herps and that our activities are sustainable rather then PRETENDING nobody sells herps.

Okay Brad, define “real commercial collector?” Anyone selling a wild caught herp that they collected is a commercial collector. Anyone buying a wild caught herp is supporting commercial collection. Anyone trading wild caught herps they collected is a commercial collector. Trading is considered commercial according to TPWD regs. Selling captive born herps is commercial otherwise you would give away your offspring. “99% of Texas herpers NEVER sell a wild caught herp? Where did you get this stat? My guess is you pulled it out of your angus region.

Welkerii

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by -EJ » June 21st, 2011, 3:32 am

Do you collect commercially? Reads like it.

If I went to west Texas and found whatever... I'd bring it back if I could. Greybands and especially Transpacos Rats. I'm happy the law went through. The cudos to those who made it happen are really meaningless on the net. It was an amazing effort. It's interesting how the herpers have a voice in TX... It's cool how its gone back and forth so many times. I've not seen that in any other state laws.

Your post strikes me wrong for some reason... or... is it a wind up?
OHI wrote:“It doesn't matter how sustainable commercial collecting is-the reason the road ban law passed in the first place was that a couple of the higher ups in TPW LE were able to sell the "narrative" (that every snake hunter in the Trans-Pecos was getting rich by catching and selling rare reptiles) to the legislature and to others in TPW. Five minutes talking to any w. Texas warden or any of the involved legislators will tell you that. But the FACT is that you can count REAL commercial collectors in this state on the fingers of one hand

It may soothe some folk's conscience to play word games with the word "commercial", but the fact is 99% of herpers in Texas NEVER sell a wild-caught reptile or amphibian. And it's vitally important that TPW and our legislators understand that.”

As usual Chambers can’t see past his blinders. It does matter that Texas herpers collect in a sustainable manner. This fact is why we should be allowed to do what we do. It doesn’t matter whether you collect for yourself or sell everything you catch as long as it is sustainable. I will agree that there are way more hobbyist or recreational collectors in Texas thus they take more of certain species in aggregate then commercial folks. Thus they have a bigger impact. This is why it is wise to be honest about what you do and document this with TPWD so they can manage the resource. It would also be wise to educate TPWD and the legislators to the fact that we are not becoming rich collecting herps and that our activities are sustainable rather then PRETENDING nobody sells herps.

Okay Brad, define “real commercial collector?” Anyone selling a wild caught herp that they collected is a commercial collector. Anyone buying a wild caught herp is supporting commercial collection. Anyone trading wild caught herps they collected is a commercial collector. Trading is considered commercial according to TPWD regs. Selling captive born herps is commercial otherwise you would give away your offspring. “99% of Texas herpers NEVER sell a wild caught herp? Where did you get this stat? My guess is you pulled it out of your angus region.

Welkerii

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 21st, 2011, 4:09 am

OHI wrote: This fact is why we should be allowed to do what we do.

Okay Brad, define “real commercial collector?” Anyone selling a wild caught herp that they collected is a commercial collector. Anyone buying a wild caught herp is supporting commercial collection. Anyone trading wild caught herps they collected is a commercial collector. Trading is considered commercial according to TPWD regs. Selling captive born herps is commercial otherwise you would give away your offspring. “99% of Texas herpers NEVER sell a wild caught herp? Where did you get this stat? My guess is you pulled it out of your angus region.

Welkerii
What you mean "WE", kimo sabe? :lol:

Notice how Mike very slyly attempts to conflate the two terms "Commercial" and "Commercial Collector" for his own purposes here. There's a HUGE difference. Once again he's showing his desperation to insinuate himself under the protection of the overall umbrella of mainstream herpers-which is his only purpose for posting here (Can anyone remember him posting any actual field herping pics on this forum? :roll: ). He can see the writing on the wall-only a tiny handful of states still allow Commercial Collection.

Yep, quite a few of us sell CAPTIVE BORN reptiles, sometimes by the hundreds. But as for wild caught animals-well, Welker, I know many, many Texas herpers-and you're the only "Commercial Collector" I know (Of course there are a VERY few others). KW is gone, so I'll say it:

WACKADOODLE! :crazyeyes:

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by lepidus61 » June 21st, 2011, 6:42 am

Mike, I see you have reared your head once again. I really dont want to be put in the same catigory as commercial collectors period. The Law didnt stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck. I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law. You want no regs on what you can or cant do period. We finally came to some kind of a compromise with TPW. I for one dont want to mess this up . I think you should go to some Commercial Collectors Forum to post your rantings.
Have a nice day :D

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by chrish » June 21st, 2011, 7:43 am

I don't know OHI personally, and I've only met Brad C. once. However, I do know about OHI from some of his customers.

OHI (or MW), you make part of your living by collecting and selling large numbers of herps from the wilds around El Paso. From what I know, you run an array of pitfall traps to collect lizards to sell as feeders to snake keepers etc. and you also sell invertebrates that you find. You sell HUNDREDS of animals a year, probably more. I know this because I know people who have bought animals from you.

Can you refute any of those facts?

If not, then you are a different type of collector than the person that picks up a snake off a cut and takes it home to breed and sell babies. The regulatory agencies SHOULD treat your type of commercial exploitation of the wildlife resource differently from what the average herper does because it is different in both scale and intent.

But everyone is entitled to their own opinions, I guess.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by lepidus61 » June 21st, 2011, 8:16 am

infidel wrote:
chad ks wrote:I think it's clear given the language of the law that only spotlighting from a vehicle is restricted:
The bill would amend portions of the Parks and Wildlife Code to establish a reptile and amphibian hunting stamp. With the purchase of a hunting license and the new stamp, an individual is permitted to capture (without using a trap) indigenous reptiles or amphibians by non-lethal means, including capturing on a shoulder of a road or unpaved area of a public right-of-way, under certain conditions. An individual would be prohibited from using a spotlight from a motor vehicle in capturing a reptile or amphibian. The bill would exempt persons performing activities related to operation and maintenance of pipelines or to oil or gas exploration or production or employees of certain utilities who capture and subsequently release reptiles or amphibians from hunting license and stamp requirements.

The bill would require the Texas Parks and Wildlife Commission to adopt rules, along with the form, design and manner of stamp issuance by March 1, 2012. The stamp fee would be $10 and valid for a state fiscal year, except for the first year when the fee will be prorated from the date of initial issuance to the end of the fiscal year. The bill would take immediate effect if the bill receives two-thirds the vote of all members in both houses. Otherwise, the bill would take effect September 1, 2011.
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/Search/D ... ightType=1

...so then it's pretty much going to be in effect very soon you say? What about printing the stamps?
As per the text of the law, if it receives 2/3rds' vote (which it did), it goes into effect immediately. The problem is by definition, that makes ALL herping in Texas illegal until they come out with a stamp or endorsement. TP&WL can however go by the "spirit" of the intent of the law and allow herping (administratively) with a hunting license until they come out with a stamp/endorsement. I'm guessing we'll get word from TP&WL soon how they intend to approach this. They should be sending out legislative updates to their field wardens soon. So maybe you guys with Warden buddies in W. Texas might hear something soon. we'll see.
On the Texas Legislative site it is stated that it doesnt become law until 9/1/11. How can this be correct , as it recieved 2/3s vote? :?

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Fundad » June 21st, 2011, 8:34 am

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OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 22nd, 2011, 11:21 am

“I don't know OHI personally, and I've only met Brad C. once. However, I do know about OHI from some of his customers.

OHI (or MW), you make part of your living by collecting and selling large numbers of herps from the wilds around El Paso. From what I know, you run an array of pitfall traps to collect lizards to sell as feeders to snake keepers etc. and you also sell invertebrates that you find. You sell HUNDREDS of animals a year, probably more. I know this because I know people who have bought animals from you.

Can you refute any of those facts?

If not, then you are a different type of collector than the person that picks up a snake off a cut and takes it home to breed and sell babies. The regulatory agencies SHOULD treat your type of commercial exploitation of the wildlife resource differently from what the average herper does because it is different in both scale and intent.

But everyone is entitled to their own opinions, I guess.”

ROTFLMAO!!!!!!! Yes, I refute those lies 100 percent. Where do you uninformed people get your mis-information? I make my living breeding/selling rodents, breeding/selling snakes and lizards, and selling sustainably harvested wild collected herps and invertebrates to people who want animals. This includes university researchers, zoos, venom labs, museums, hobbyists and pet stores. I do not collect large numbers of anything. I don’t have any pitfall traps. I sold a grand total of 82 herps last year and 32 were atrox for a venom lab. Definitely a sustainable number. You can check with TPWD public records and request a records search on me. My Dealer Nongame Permit # is NGD-0107-011. This is also less than 100 animals so the people you are talking to are liars and nothing you say is worth responding to. And incidentally, the snakes I have supplied have gone into to life saving anti-venom, dog anti-venom and cancer research. Additionally snakes I have supplied will be acknowledged in two paleo-herp papers coming out this year.

Why do I waste my time with you uninformed jokers? Bang, bang, bang my head. I guess because I am getting slandered and I do good work. Everyone can’t like you for being honest.

Welkerii

OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 22nd, 2011, 12:17 pm

“What you mean "WE", kimo sabe?

Notice how Mike very slyly attempts to conflate the two terms "Commercial" and "Commercial Collector" for his own purposes here. There's a HUGE difference. Once again he's showing his desperation to insinuate himself under the protection of the overall umbrella of mainstream herpers-which is his only purpose for posting here (Can anyone remember him posting any actual field herping pics on this forum? ). He can see the writing on the wall-only a tiny handful of states still allow Commercial Collection.

Yep, quite a few of us sell CAPTIVE BORN reptiles, sometimes by the hundreds. But as for wild caught animals-well, Welker, I know many, many Texas herpers-and you're the only "Commercial Collector" I know (Of course there are a VERY few others). KW is gone, so I'll say it:

WACKADOODLE!”

No Brad, not conflating terms, just stating facts. People selling captive born offspring are commercial and they make money off their animals. They collect wild caught breeder stock to produce these CB babies which they sell for money. You tell me? TPWD classifies anyone selling herps whether WC or CB as commercial and requires you to purchase a Dealer Nongame Permit. I think your point is that hobbyists who collect wild breeding stock for captive reproduction are not selling the actual wild caught animal. That is true. Feel better? Yes, there is some writing on the wall. Some states have pushed the AR banning agenda and outlawed the sale of wild caught herps. Is that the correct way to manage and regulate by banning US citizens? I don’t think so. Ever heard of sustainable harvest? I am waiting for a definition of commercial collector Brad? I keep, breed and sell herps what does that make me? Oh yea, Brad said I am a Commercial Collector and only a Commercial Collector. Okay genius!

Welkerii

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BChambers
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 22nd, 2011, 1:28 pm

That's easy, Mike-a commercial collector is one who makes his living by capturing wild reptiles and amphibians and selling them. You are a commercial collector. I'm not-nor are any of the other regulars on this forum, at least those I've come to know over the years. You seem to wonder why your posts engender such hostility, but really all most of us want is for you to start being a little honest-stop trying to sell us on the nonsensical idea that what you do is equivalent to what we do.They aren't remotely the same.

Sustainable harvest is indeed a worthy goal, and one most of us can get behind. Unfortunately, history has amply demonstrated that the profit motive is incompatible with same. That's the reason that reptiles and amphibians are-in the small handful of states which still allow it-the last group of terrestrial vertebrates still subject to some degree of commercial exploitation. No government agency would THINK of allowing commercial take of any of our native birds and mammals, with good reason. More and more, states are applying the same logic to herps-treating them as game animals subject to sustainable and selective recreational harvest , rather than some kind of bulk resource to be mined until it's gone.

OHI wrote:
No Brad, not conflating terms, just stating facts. People selling captive born offspring are commercial and they make money off their animals. They collect wild caught breeder stock to produce these CB babies which they sell for money. You tell me? TPWD classifies anyone selling herps whether WC or CB as commercial and requires you to purchase a Dealer Nongame Permit. I think your point is that hobbyists who collect wild breeding stock for captive reproduction are not selling the actual wild caught animal. That is true. Feel better? Yes, there is some writing on the wall. Some states have pushed the AR banning agenda and outlawed the sale of wild caught herps. Is that the correct way to manage and regulate by banning US citizens? I don’t think so. Ever heard of sustainable harvest? I am waiting for a definition of commercial collector Brad? I keep, breed and sell herps what does that make me? Oh yea, Brad said I am a Commercial Collector and only a Commercial Collector. Okay genius!

Welkerii

OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 22nd, 2011, 1:35 pm

“Mike, I see you have reared your head once again. I really dont want to be put in the same catigory as commercial collectors period. The Law didnt stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck. I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law. You want no regs on what you can or cant do period. We finally came to some kind of a compromise with TPW. I for one dont want to mess this up . I think you should go to some Commercial Collectors Forum to post your rantings.
Have a nice day”

Another mis-informed person.

“The law didn’t stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck.”

I didn’t collect everything I found last year. Probably closer to the opposite of that. I collect common species only via an order which includes a deposit. I don’t collect strictly for profit. I love herps, keep and breed them. Got eggs cooking now.

“I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law.”

You were there collecting herps off the road? I wouldn’t admit that on a public forum. No, my animals were not collected from the roads. I have plenty of private land to herp on. I had people collecting snakes for me? Why didn’t I get any snakes then? My friends John and Kyle know what species I am interested in and said if they saw any they would pick them up. Last year I didn’t get any from John and just a couple from Kyle. I didn’t get out herping hardly at all last year, to busy working on the rodents. And broke because I am making a fortune as a Commercial Collector collecting every herp I see, ROTFLMAO! You guys can’t believe what you hear because you are getting fed a load of BS.

“You want no regs on what you can or cant do period.”

WRONG! I want more regs especially on people like you. You come to Texas catch your herps (not reporting your catch to TPWD) and take them back to KS and sell them for gas money! I don’t want to hear it. Just kidding! I have no clue what you do unless your initials have two of these letters in it JFBA (I don’t call people out unless they deserve it). Actually I want the White and Black list abolished. I want management and regulation on species for which reviewable data has been gathered to support need. I want all herpers even “hobbyists” to report ALL their activities. I want a herp specific hunting license. I want an official list of Texas amphibians and reptiles down to the sub-specific level. I want the ability to sell legal harvested, sustainably collected herps in every state not just Texas. I want to streamline all herp laws state to state so we can conduct our hobbies and businesses. There are many more but you have to wait for the paper.

Again, what a bunch of mis-informed people we have on this forum. They believe rumors and lies. Why don’t you actually find out the real facts before you go spouting your mouth off? It makes you look foolish.

Welkerii

OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 22nd, 2011, 1:37 pm

“Mike, I see you have reared your head once again. I really dont want to be put in the same catigory as commercial collectors period. The Law didnt stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck. I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law. You want no regs on what you can or cant do period. We finally came to some kind of a compromise with TPW. I for one dont want to mess this up . I think you should go to some Commercial Collectors Forum to post your rantings.
Have a nice day”

Another mis-informed person.

“The law didn’t stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck.”

I didn’t collect everything I found last year. Probably closer to the opposite of that. I collect common species only via an order which includes a deposit. I don’t collect strictly for profit. I love herps, keep and breed them. Got eggs cooking now.

“I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law.”

You were there collecting herps off the road? I wouldn’t admit that on a public forum. No, my animals were not collected from the roads. I have plenty of private land to herp on. I had people collecting snakes for me? Why didn’t I get any snakes then? My friends John and Kyle know what species I am interested in and said if they saw any they would pick them up. Last year I didn’t get any from John and just a couple from Kyle. I didn’t get out herping hardly at all last year, to busy working on the rodents. And broke because I am making a fortune as a Commercial Collector collecting every herp I see, ROTFLMAO! You guys can’t believe what you hear because you are getting fed a load of BS.

“You want no regs on what you can or cant do period.”

WRONG! I want more regs especially on people like you. You come to Texas catch your herps (not reporting your catch to TPWD) and take them back to KS and sell them for gas money! I don’t want to hear it. Just kidding! I have no clue what you do unless your initials have two of these letters in it JFBA (I don’t call people out unless they deserve it). Actually I want the White and Black list abolished. I want management and regulation on species for which reviewable data has been gathered to support need. I want all herpers even “hobbyists” to report ALL their activities. I want a herp specific hunting license. I want an official list of Texas amphibians and reptiles down to the sub-specific level. I want the ability to sell legal harvested, sustainably collected herps in every state not just Texas. I want to streamline all herp laws state to state so we can conduct our hobbies and businesses. There are many more but you have to wait for the paper.

Again, what a bunch of mis-informed people we have on this forum. They believe rumors and lies. Why don’t you actually find out the real facts before you go spouting your mouth off? It makes you look foolish.

I will have a nice day and you do the same!

Welkerii

OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 22nd, 2011, 2:06 pm

“That's easy, Mike-a commercial collector is one who makes his living by capturing wild reptiles and amphibians and selling them. You are a commercial collector. I'm not-nor are any of the other regulars on this forum, at least those I've come to know over the years. You seem to wonder why your posts engender such hostility, but really all most of us want is for you to start being a little honest-stop trying to sell us on the nonsensical idea that what you do is equivalent to what we do.They aren't remotely the same.

Sustainable harvest is indeed a worthy goal, and one most of us can get behind. Unfortunately, history has amply demonstrated that the profit motive is incompatible with same. That's the reason that reptiles and amphibians are-in the small handful of states which still allow it-the last group of terrestrial vertebrates still subject to some degree of commercial exploitation. No government agency would THINK of allowing commercial take of any of our native birds and mammals, with good reason. More and more, states are applying the same logic to herps-treating them as game animals subject to sustainable and selective recreational harvest , rather than some kind of bulk resource to be mined until it's gone.”

I don’t make my living by being a commercial collector. I make my living by breeding rodents so you are wrong again Brad, as usual. I will have to get back to my rodents after this response. It is a waste of my time trying to educate the uninformed closed minded folks on this forum. And those who think their feces don’t stink. I know many people on this forum who sell or have sold wild caught herps. There you go again Brad, in your own little world. Take your blinders off. I am more honest then most herpers. I admit what I do and fight for it. Many Texas herpers (both in state and out) do back room deals, sell wild caught while claiming they don’t, catch gas money snakes, trade herps and on and on. It is a fact! Remotely the same, Brad? You have such a high opinion of yourself. They are closely inter-related. C’mon on Brad we aren’t stupid!

No, sustainable harvest hasn’t been regulated properly. You can’t half ass it. But it is better then protecting them into extinction! You have to collect founder stock to produce CB offspring. Captive propagation makes more of a species and that is conservation and a safety net. People buy herps to breed and that is a good thing. Not to mention catching herps for research, education and exhibition. Commercial take is allowed for many species: herps, inverts, fish, small mammals, trees, ore and minerals, water, oil, natural gas, etc. Hell you can shoot and kill crows and other “pest” birds in most states – and rattlesnakes. The reason birds are protected is because they are declining due to deforestation. I say let hobbyists breed them. They will not go extinct.

As usual it is just a waste of my time arguing with closed minded folks. If I feel like it in a couple days I may come back and respond.

Welkerii

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BChambers
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 22nd, 2011, 2:25 pm

OHI wrote:
I don’t make my living by being a commercial collector. I make my living by breeding rodents so you are wrong again Brad, as usual. I will have to get back to my rodents after this response.

I sold a grand total of 82 herps last year
Welkerii
Just thought I'd let you refute your own point, since I'm bored with it 8-) What's really disturbing is that evidently by your standards selling 82 wild caught reptiles is an insignificant number (not that I accept it at face value-given your penchant for half-truths, I'd guess doubling that number would be conservative).
OHI wrote: I didn’t collect everything I found last year. Probably closer to the opposite of that. I collect common species only via an order which includes a deposit. I don’t collect strictly for profit. I love herps, keep and breed them.
Really, so all those ads over on KS under "Ocotillo Herps and Invertebrates"-not yours? Some other Mike Welker?

Save it Mike-the herp community is well aware of the range and scope of your activities.

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lepidus61
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by lepidus61 » June 23rd, 2011, 11:36 am

OHI wrote:“Mike, I see you have reared your head once again. I really dont want to be put in the same catigory as commercial collectors period. The Law didnt stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck. I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law. You want no regs on what you can or cant do period. We finally came to some kind of a compromise with TPW. I for one dont want to mess this up . I think you should go to some Commercial Collectors Forum to post your rantings.
Have a nice day”

Another mis-informed person.

“The law didn’t stop you from collecting everything you found last year for the purpose of making a buck.”

I didn’t collect everything I found last year. Probably closer to the opposite of that. I collect common species only via an order which includes a deposit. I don’t collect strictly for profit. I love herps, keep and breed them. Got eggs cooking now.

“I know for a fact that what you have listed on another site commercial page was collected from the roadways of west texas last year, I was there and know who collected the snakes for you, so cut the crap about trying to get around the law.”

You were there collecting herps off the road? I wouldn’t admit that on a public forum. No, my animals were not collected from the roads. I have plenty of private land to herp on. I had people collecting snakes for me? Why didn’t I get any snakes then? My friends John and Kyle know what species I am interested in and said if they saw any they would pick them up. Last year I didn’t get any from John and just a couple from Kyle. I didn’t get out herping hardly at all last year, to busy working on the rodents. And broke because I am making a fortune as a Commercial Collector collecting every herp I see, ROTFLMAO! You guys can’t believe what you hear because you are getting fed a load of BS.

“You want no regs on what you can or cant do period.”

WRONG! I want more regs especially on people like you. You come to Texas catch your herps (not reporting your catch to TPWD) and take them back to KS and sell them for gas money! I don’t want to hear it. Just kidding! I have no clue what you do unless your initials have two of these letters in it JFBA (I don’t call people out unless they deserve it). Actually I want the White and Black list abolished. I want management and regulation on species for which reviewable data has been gathered to support need. I want all herpers even “hobbyists” to report ALL their activities. I want a herp specific hunting license. I want an official list of Texas amphibians and reptiles down to the sub-specific level. I want the ability to sell legal harvested, sustainably collected herps in every state not just Texas. I want to streamline all herp laws state to state so we can conduct our hobbies and businesses. There are many more but you have to wait for the paper.

Again, what a bunch of mis-informed people we have on this forum. They believe rumors and lies. Why don’t you actually find out the real facts before you go spouting your mouth off? It makes you look foolish.

I will have a nice day and you do the same!

Welkerii
Mike, to argue this issue with you is futile. I know where the animals came from, i know who took them and i know who they were taken fore. I dont remember saying i was collecting herps from the roadways last year, you must be mis informed. As for you not herping any at all last year , there is a certian road in a certain MT. range that you cruised all season last year. I saw you there countless number of nights, so go blow your smoke somewhere els, I for one dont want to hear it.

Wishing you well, tour time has come. :thumb:

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Bitinglittlewitch
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Bitinglittlewitch » June 23rd, 2011, 3:21 pm

Oh come on. Anyone who captures and sells wildlife of any kind is just a plain creep.

You all must surely realize how much just simply having a road there affects "sustainability" of an area. Just the presence of a road creates a huge DOR driven void zone for miles on either side.

Now, this law only affects those who catch and pick up. It would not affect plain lookers at herps in situ. Right?

Some laws are just too stupid to obey.

OHI
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by OHI » June 24th, 2011, 3:19 am

How can you have a respectful discussion with haters (nicer word then what I wanted to use)? One can’t spell and one can’t read. And both just want to trash me and argue. Okay ladies, I am done. Before I go and just for the record:

1. It is legal to sell wild caught and captive born herps (I have both for sale on Ksnake). It is legal to collect herps from the wild.

2. It is legal to hunt invertebrates from the road (even those running through mountains).

3. I have all my permits and licenses. Do you lepidus61?

4. I make a large majority of my income from breeding and selling rodents.

5. Many herps and inverts I have collected for individuals have been used for life saving anti-venom, cancer research, dog anti-venom, paleo-herp research (two peer reviewed papers coming out this year), exhibition and education.

6. My customers include university academics, zoos, museums, hobbyists and venom labs.

7. I don’t catch and try to sell every animal I see. In fact, quite the opposite. I only collect animals for captive breeding, research and those highly desired by hobbyists for captive breeding and pets.

8. I keep and breed snakes, lizards, mice and rats. I am a registered small business in Texas and pay taxes.

9. I do hunt the Hueco Mts. a fair amount as they are the closest herping spot to the house and I have several properties I can herp on up there. But wasn’t up there countless nights. I wish. BTW lepidus61, how can someone whose location listed on this forum as from central US be up in the Hueco Mts. of Texas countless nights to see me countless nights? Do you now live in Texas? I know one person who hunts the Huecos almost every night. At least he is up there every time I am lucky enough to get out. This person has lived in El Paso for a few years now. Strangely, though, lepidus61 joined FHF in December 2010 with the location of central US. Why lie about your location? Why call yourself Clark? Using false names again? Authorities still after you? Enough said! :thumb:

These are the facts no matter what you slanderous bozos say!

Later days…

Welkerii

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Daryl Eby
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Daryl Eby » June 24th, 2011, 6:54 am

Mike,

I accept that it is perfectly legal for you to capture and sell wild animals. However, for me, legality is really just a side issue. Lots of things are legal that perhaps should not be and vice versa. I'm more bothered by someone legally collecting WC for commercial sale than by someone illegally collecting WC for personal use.

I simply find the idea of commercializing wildlife to be distasteful. Since adopting that ideal as a personal ethic several years ago, I have made many exceptions and allowances. Heck, I was even swayed on some points by my personal conversation with you on a dark Texas roadway a few years back. I now accept that some types of commercialization are necessary and beneficial. Many others are arguably harmless. However, I still find it all distasteful and would prefer to see the herping community continue to move further and further from commercialization of WC. Accordingly, I am glad to hear that you are earning a considerable portion of your income from captive propagation of herps and rodents. I wish you great success in these endeavors and hope you move more and more in that direction.

I regret that you feel you have been misunderstood and unfairly attacked. As you defend yourself from these allegations, I hope you will stop to consider how herpers such as myself feel when you label us as commercial for gifting (in exchange for nothing more than good will and warm feelings) a WC to a good friend or reputable organization that we know can use it in a breeding or educational program. You make some excellent points about sustainability and all herpers working together. However, those points tend to get lost in the back and forth of attacks and counterattacks.

If you want me, and others like me, to work with you and support your efforts, try focusing on the interests that we all share instead of trying to equate all uses of wild take. I strongly support your personal interests in herps, your captive propagation (including capturing new breed stock for yourself), and supplying animals for research and education. It would be easier for me to give you credit and backing for those efforts if I wasn't so busy recoiling and defending against your emphatic attempts to equate hobbyists activities (that may have some small or theoretical financial benefit no matter how far removed from the field) to the selling of a wild animal to a pet store.

It is obvious that you know the difference between capturing for personal enjoyment or captive propagation, selling to researchers/educators, and selling to pet stores. Your own ranking of the acceptability of these different uses is evident every time you come on this forum and describe your activities. You proudly assert your personal interests in reptiles and your captive propagation. You strongly defend and even brag a little (rightly so) about providing animals for researchers and educators. Then, you meekly acknowledge that you also sell some WC animals to pet stores and wholesalers. Since you obviously recognize the differences yourself, stop trying to minimize or deny them.

Good luck and best wishes with your personal collection, captive propagation, and supplying researches and educators.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 24th, 2011, 7:20 am

As usual, Daryl has reasonably and succinctly laid out the base issues here. I basically agree, though perhaps I feel more strongly about some, and based on my past experiences with the party involved, am far less likely to take what he says at anything close to face value.

That's particularly true with HB 1788, the subject of this thread. Herp Conservation Unlimited, an organization made up of a broad croos-section of Herpetologists, Herpetoculturists, and other interested parties, has been fighting for a solid four years, through two legislative sessions, to get a reversal of the road ban law of 2007. Throughout that time Mike Welker has done everything he possibly could to slander, undermine and work against both HCU, its officers, its members and its various efforts. These have beengrueling and delicate negotiations,and this is the LAST thing we needed. And now that those efforts have FINALLY borne fruit, here he is once again to insist on his personal slice of the pie.

So yes, I call BS. :roll:

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Daryl Eby
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Daryl Eby » June 24th, 2011, 8:24 am

BChambers wrote:As usual, Daryl has reasonably and succinctly laid out the base issues here. I basically agree, though perhaps I feel more strongly about some, and based on my past experiences with the party involved, am far less likely to take what he says at anything close to face value.
Perhaps you are correct in your distrust. I often err too far on the side of giving the benefit of the doubt. That benefit was just now called into question when a herper I greatly respect sent me a selection of screen captures of some of Welker's KS adds.

Earlier in this thread, Welker stated "7. I don’t catch and try to sell every animal I see. In fact, quite the opposite. I only collect animals for captive breeding, research and those highly desired by hobbyists for captive breeding and pets."

Perhaps I'm just out of the "herps for dollars" loop but I didn't realize that the below animals are "highly desired by hobbyists for captive breeding and pets." Yet all of them have appeared in Welker's KS adds.
  • Bullsnakes
    Emory Ratsnakes
    Glossy Snakes
    Texas Longnoses
    Western Longnoses
    Sonora Lyresnakes
    Mountain Patchnose Snake
    Fox Snakes
Then again, most of the below snakes could possibly be considered "highly desired" by some. They also have appeared in his adds. Desirable or not, this looks like an awful lot of WC animals for someone who spends most of his time focused on captive propagation of herps and rodents.
  • Tiger Rattlesnakes
    Arizona Black Rattlesnakes
    Banded Rock Rattlesnakes
    Broad-banded Copperheads
    Dusky Pygmy Rattlesnakes
    Mohave Sidewinders
    Northern Blacktail Rattlesnakes
    Sonoran Sidewinders
    Tiger Rattlesnake
    Trans Pecos Copperheads
    Western Pygmy Rattlesnakes
    Cornsnakes
    Plains Hognoses
    Mexican Hognoses
    Northern Pinesnakes
    Sonoran Gophersnakes
    Arizona Mountain Kingsnakes
    Brook's Kingsnakes
    Desert Kings
    Florida Kings
    Red Milks
    Trans-Pecos Ratsnakes
    Baird's Ratsnakes
Of course some of these animal may well be captive born and bred. I filtered out several animals that likely were from captive stock. Mike is welcome to come back on line and filter out any other non-WC animals or explain why I should not have been as shocked and disgusted as I was when I reviewed this selection of his adds.

I can post or PM images of the screen captures if needed, but would prefer not to waste my time or soil FHF. I'm gonna go throw-up and shower now.

EDIT: After posting the above, John Craft (I don't know him) joined FHF and made his first post in order to comment (among other things) that Mike may now be selling far fewer WC than he used to. I don't know if that is true or not. However, in fairness to that possibility I went back and checked the dates on the listings I referenced above. I was surprised to note that most of these listings were from 2007 and none were from 2011. I don't know if that is because Mike has not posted any recent KS listings or just because the herper that sent them to me copied them primarily in 2007. I tried searching for current KS listings by Mike but didn't find any. Of course, I've never searched their classifieds and don't know if I was searching properly. It is also possible that Mike is just using a different method to market WC animals. It would be very refreshing and positive if Mike could offer believable assurances that his 2007 listings do not bear any resemblance to his current business model.

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lepidus61
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by lepidus61 » June 24th, 2011, 9:32 am

OHI wrote:How can you have a respectful discussion with haters (nicer word then what I wanted to use)? One can’t spell and one can’t read. And both just want to trash me and argue. Okay ladies, I am done. Before I go and just for the record:

1. It is legal to sell wild caught and captive born herps (I have both for sale on Ksnake). It is legal to collect herps from the wild.

2. It is legal to hunt invertebrates from the road (even those running through mountains).

3. I have all my permits and licenses. Do you lepidus61?

4. I make a large majority of my income from breeding and selling rodents.

5. Many herps and inverts I have collected for individuals have been used for life saving anti-venom, cancer research, dog anti-venom, paleo-herp research (two peer reviewed papers coming out this year), exhibition and education.

6. My customers include university academics, zoos, museums, hobbyists and venom labs.

7. I don’t catch and try to sell every animal I see. In fact, quite the opposite. I only collect animals for captive breeding, research and those highly desired by hobbyists for captive breeding and pets.

8. I keep and breed snakes, lizards, mice and rats. I am a registered small business in Texas and pay taxes.

9. I do hunt the Hueco Mts. a fair amount as they are the closest herping spot to the house and I have several properties I can herp on up there. But wasn’t up there countless nights. I wish. BTW lepidus61, how can someone whose location listed on this forum as from central US be up in the Hueco Mts. of Texas countless nights to see me countless nights? Do you now live in Texas? I know one person who hunts the Huecos almost every night. At least he is up there every time I am lucky enough to get out. This person has lived in El Paso for a few years now. Strangely, though, lepidus61 joined FHF in December 2010 with the location of central US. Why lie about your location? Why call yourself Clark? Using false names again? Authorities still after you? Enough said! :thumb:

These are the facts no matter what you slanderous bozos say!

Later days…

Welkerii
Mike, this is my last post on this issue, as far as the permits go, yes i do have any and all permits that are required. As far as hunting inverts on roads,when did Alterna become inverts? As for my name and location, you must have me mixed up with some outher person, never lived in El Paso, but i do have family there. I think even you can see the writing on the wall. See you around. DONE! :mrgreen:

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Daryl Eby
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Daryl Eby » June 24th, 2011, 9:37 am

BTW is it legal to sell WC from AZ, NM and KS? Some of Mike's listings for snakes from those states claim they are "CB" while others are strangely silent on the issue or claim "unknown".

Just asking. I don't know the laws on selling animals and don't know what types of permits Mike might possess.

Then again, as I stated before, I'm more troubled by the ethics (my personal opinion and not binding on others) than the legalities. My only real concern about legal violations is that a few scofflaws can give LE and regulators an excuse to pass and enforce ever more restrictive laws against the rest of us.

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lepidus61
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by lepidus61 » June 24th, 2011, 1:18 pm

Daryl Eby wrote:BTW is it legal to sell WC from AZ, NM and KS? Some of Mike's listings for snakes from those states claim they are "CB" while others are strangely silent on the issue or claim "unknown".

Just asking. I don't know the laws on selling animals and don't know what types of permits Mike might possess.

Then again, as I stated before, I'm more troubled by the ethics (my personal opinion and not binding on others) than the legalities. My only real concern about legal violations is that a few scofflaws can give LE and regulators an excuse to pass and enforce ever more restrictive laws against the rest of us.
Daryl, I agree with you 100 %. The old saying goes, if we dont police ourselves someone will do it for us. :thumb:

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by jcraft » June 24th, 2011, 4:39 pm

Why do I feel like I'm about to step in sh*t...?

Let me preface this by saying that I do not condone the unsustainable collection of any species of animal.

I've known Mike for the last 4 years, so I won't pretend to know his complete business history. The way he has presented his business is in line with his current business philosophy, though that may not be in line with how he previously conducted business. I would compare this to the way many hobbyists start by collecting and caring for an array of herps before refining their herp strategy. In the last year, Mike has spent a large investment in time and money with his business partner to develop his rodent business. There were multiple occasions during the last year that I've spent in El Paso that Mike turned down invitations to go herping because of the demands of the business. I believe that the growing profitability of the rodents will continue the trend away from large quantities of wc herps being sold. I may be wrong.

As Mike has stated, he has provided herps for legitimate scientific research and museum specimens. On this site, this an accepted transaction, despite the exchange of money. PETA would disagree. Some feel as adamantly that wild caught herps should not be sold for profit. I tend to agree with this view, if herps are being stockpiled for profit reaping. If an order is made by a customer for a specific animal, or group of animals, prior to collection, I fail to see how this is different from hobbyists who will pick up an animal for a buddy (applies to end user customers, not for those who are acquiring for resale). The customer may not have the financial resources to fund a herp trip. Should this person be denied the pleasure of of owning/breeding the animals of his choice because he does not possess the ability to acquire it through "acceptable" means?

I don't understand the reasoning behind the acceptance of those who venture out to collect their animals from the wild, after an investment of sometimes thousands of dollars, and the shunning of those who cater to those that cannot take on that expense. If you can explain that to me, I'd appreciate the insight. If an animal has been removed from habitat, what more "damage" can be done? The result is the same, wether the animal is killed, cared for, or sold. I imagine that some will argue that profit encourages others to become involved in commercial collecting. I would argue that "true" commercial collecting is not limited to roadways. The impact to populations adjacent to roadways is negligible. I base this on continued availability of highly prized species in relatively stable numbers year after year. As an example, alterna are probably collected at near 100% of those observed, along with the loss due to the road itself. Despite this sustained "pressure", the same roads that have been collected for 30 to 40 years are still producing. It would seem to me that the hobbyists should align themselves with the commercial collectors (when speaking of take from the roads), and provide accurate data to TPWD in order to demonstrate that all take from the roadways is sustainable. The hobbyists undoubtedly have a larger impact on select species than commercial collectors. I imagine that is why some like to pretend that the impact of hobbyists is negligible when compared to the big, bad collector. I'm not buying it.

Brad, based on the subject of this thread, and the anticipation that the community has shown for this bill to be passed, I'd disagree that the majority of herpers never collect an animal. I'd also disagree that 99% of herpers have never sold a wc animal. I have met and conversed with many of the "recognizable and respected" hobbyists, and would estimate that no less than 75% have sold wc at some time. Though hunters cannot sell their kills in the case of deer and game birds, there are instances that the authorities condone the selling of hunted or collected species - think marine.

Lepidus61 - Beside myself and my hunting partner, there was only one other person who frequented the Huecos with regularity - that would be Shawn Peavy. So either you are Shawn, or you are lying. Remember what they say about the guy throwing rocks while living in a glass house.

I have much more respect for those of you who hold the opinion that no animals should be removed from the population, even if you reached that opinion after committing your own "offenses". I do not hold that opinion.

I enjoy keeping a few species. I have collected the vast majority of the animals in my collection, though I have been given a couple by friends, and purchased another (boa). I have given away far more animals than sold, but I have sold on occasion. In the instances that I have sold wc animals, it was often because my focus changed, or I had picked up animals (as gifts) for other interested hobbyists who changed their mind after I collected them. At that point, the animals had been removed from their habitat and reintroduction was not an option.

Well. That got into rambling, but I feel as if there is much more to be said.

John Craft

How's that for an introduction?

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Daryl Eby
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by Daryl Eby » June 24th, 2011, 7:40 pm

jcraft wrote:Why do I feel like I'm about to step in sh*t...?
Ha. I feel that way every time I'm fool hardy (or just foolish) enough to enter into these debates.
I've known Mike for the last 4 years, so I won't pretend to know his complete business history. The way he has presented his business is in line with his current business philosophy, though that may not be in line with how he previously conducted business. I would compare this to the way many hobbyists start by collecting and caring for an array of herps before refining their herp strategy. In the last year, Mike has spent a large investment in time and money with his business partner to develop his rodent business. There were multiple occasions during the last year that I've spent in El Paso that Mike turned down invitations to go herping because of the demands of the business. I believe that the growing profitability of the rodents will continue the trend away from large quantities of wc herps being sold. I may be wrong.
That's all very good to hear. I hope you're not wrong. I know my "herp strategy" has changed dramatically over the past decades. I'm more than willing to let people leave their past behind them. With that in mind, I should add that many of Mike's KS adds that I mentioned earlier where from past years. I'll have to check those dates and edit that particular post accordingly.
I don't understand the reasoning behind the acceptance of those who venture out to collect their animals from the wild, after an investment of sometimes thousands of dollars, and the shunning of those who cater to those that cannot take on that expense. If you can explain that to me, I'd appreciate the insight.
That is a very good and difficult question. I typed up a bunch of touchy-feely crap to explain my personal opinions on the matter but had to laugh at myself and delete it before everyone else started laughing. The underlying point is that selling wild caught animals reduces them to a mere commodity and leads to a loss of recognition of their intrinsic worth. Commoditizing wild caught animals puts a positive price tag on exploiting nature and removing animals from the wild. Commoditizing captive bred animals is completely different - it puts a positive price tag on good husbandry and producing new animals. It also tends to drive down the dollar value and demand on wild animals. If a keeper wants an animal that he can't catch, it is likely available as CBB that is far healthier and better acclimated than a WC animal (especially one that was caught by a collector, sold to a wholesaler, sold to a pet store, and then purchased with little or no history).
Well. That got into rambling, but I feel as if there is much more to be said.
There is always much more to be said. This is a complex issue. Don't worry about saying too much or not enough. This is the internet, the rest of us will see your words and read into them much more or less than you ever said or meant. Hell, somebody (hopefully not me) is likely to think you're saying the exact opposite of what you meant.
How's that for an introduction?
Nice to meet you John. Thanks for sharing.

kvargas
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by kvargas » June 24th, 2011, 9:23 pm

I guess its time to throw my sticks into the fire….

Let me start off by saying that I am new to posting on the forum, although I have frequented FHF for the past several years. I feel like this is a good place to start and share some of my thoughts.

First off, I’m not sure I understand the opinion that some of you have of Mike. He makes some very good points in his posts, yet few take notice because of the feelings toward commercial collecting.

Some of the main reasons why an animal is taken out of the wild is either to be sold, given away, or to be put in somebody’s personal collection. The bottom line is that the animal was taken out of the wild, regardless of one’s intentions. Period.

Also, it seems odd to me that only certain species are acceptable to harvest in numbers. Take L.alterna for example. Many people that come to west Texas to herp come for one reason, and that is to find alterna. There is a story on KS titled “Eight is Great”. This story tells of a herper that found 8 alterna in a week long trip. Every one of these animals was collected. I am not aware of anybody bashing him for taking so many animals from the wild in just one week. Actually I think the reactions from people were quite opposite. Most people think its great that he found so many. This kind of “collecting” would most certainly be done by anyone else who saw these animals as well. I can’t imagine anybody looking for alterna to not pick up every single one that they see. Most of these animals are kept by their captor for breeding stock. When they produce offspring from them, the babies are usually sold or traded for animals of equal caliber.

Just because the vast majority of us don’t want to keep and breed longnose, glossy, and gopher snakes, doesn’t mean that nobody else is interested in doing so. As John previously stated, maybe there are people out there who are not fortunate enough to have the means necessary to collect the animals that they are personally interested in. This is where Mike comes in. If somebody inquires about a few animals, then what’s wrong with Mike going out to collect the animals to help somebody be able to enjoy the hobby? Correct me if I’m wrong but I thought that’s what herping was all about - helping each other out and sharing a passion.

Let it be known, that I do not support many aspects of “commercial collection” , but if I’m out looking for a certain species, and one of my friends expresses interest in something that I may come across, I would be inclined to pick it up for him. Wouldn’t most of you do the same?

I could go on all night but I guess ill leave it at that for now.

Kyle

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by ChrisNM » June 24th, 2011, 10:08 pm

Daryl Eby wrote:BTW is it legal to sell WC from AZ, NM and KS?
A non-resident hunting license and a commercial collector's permit will allow for such in NM. Last I'd checked, each were $50. Bag limits do exist, where I view the intent of them from a seasonal aspect. Additionally, individuals must also file an annual report with NM Dept of G & F noting what and how many are/were taken. Failure to file an annual report will result in NMDGF making the choice to no allow permitting in the future.

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 25th, 2011, 5:47 am

jcraft wrote:
Let me preface this by saying that I do not condone the unsustainable collection of any species of animal.
And yet, this will never be an issue if you define ALL collecting as "sustainable", as apparently you do. ;)
jcraft wrote:As Mike has stated, he has provided herps for legitimate scientific research and museum specimens. On this site, this an accepted transaction, despite the exchange of money. PETA would disagree.
If that were all he were doing, A lot of us (including myself) would have no problem with it. but those of us who have been following Mike's online advertisements for many years know that he is being far less than honest in the above statement. While it may be (and I certainly hope it is) true that Mike has mended his ways and now makes most of his income from rodents, this is certainly a very recent development, and not characteristic of his overall history.
jcraft wrote:Some feel as adamantly that wild caught herps should not be sold for profit. I tend to agree with this view, if herps are being stockpiled for profit reaping. If an order is made by a customer for a specific animal, or group of animals, prior to collection, I fail to see how this is different from hobbyists who will pick up an animal for a buddy (applies to end user customers, not for those who are acquiring for resale).
I don't understand the reasoning behind the acceptance of those who venture out to collect their animals from the wild, after an investment of sometimes thousands of dollars, and the shunning of those who cater to those that cannot take on that expense. If you can explain that to me, I'd appreciate the insight. If an animal has been removed from habitat, what more "damage" can be done? The result is the same, wether the animal is killed, cared for, or sold. The hobbyists undoubtedly have a larger impact on select species than commercial collectors.
I can explain it quite easily. Unlike in the past, most species-in fact almost all-that are desired as "pets" are available in voluminous numbers as healthy, acclimated captive born stock. this is one of the great benefits of the captive breeding movement. Those of us "old timers" can remember quite well when this was not so, and believe me it is a great improvement.

But the simplest answer to your question is numbers. Mike admits to selling over 80 wild-caught reptiles in the past year (a year you say was characterized by him spending far less time than in the past in the pursuit of wild caught reptiles, by the way). I don't for a minute accept this number, but let's use it for argument's sake. I know as many Trans-Pecos herpers as anyone, and the number of herps taken by each for personal use (or trade with another herper ) in an average year numbers from zero to a maximum of about a dozen. For myself, that number is one one or two. Ask yourself, how many herpers like me does it take to have an "impact" similar to Mike's in a single year? Now do that calculation again based on Mike's historic take per year-I'd be willing to bet that his take exceeds that of ALL hobbyist herpers in the Trans-Pecos on a per year basis. Certainly he is at the very least making a vastly disproportionate impact on a per person basis.

I've never encountered Mike myself-he plys the road further west than I generally do. But I have come across other commercial collectors in west Texas, and seen how their vehicles are filled with styrofoams, and how they toss everything they find (from tarantulas to spadefoots to ground snakes to subocs to alterna) therein. It's the only way to make a profit, given gas expenses. The local impact of that kind of wholesale collecting can definitely have an impact on populations-especially if you add in other commercial collector tactics such as drift fences and pitfall traps. For example, once in Ohio I visited a favorite area of vernal pools only to find them completely encircled by drift fences and bucket traps. I later found these were used to collect Ambystomid salamanders for the Columbus pet market. They had, of course, a catastrophic impact on that areas population of salamanders. Simply put, the profit motive and wild animals are not a good mix.
jcraft wrote:Brad, based on the subject of this thread, and the anticipation that the community has shown for this bill to be passed, I'd disagree that the majority of herpers never collect an animal. I'd also disagree that 99% of herpers have never sold a wc animal. I have met and conversed with many of the "recognizable and respected" hobbyists, and would estimate that no less than 75% have sold wc at some time.
First, the fact that someone may have once, many years ago, sold a wild caught animal or animals is no indictment of his/her present behavior.My figure was for present behavior, and I stand by it. A lot of us may have done that back in our teen or young adult years to finance a rare herp trip or two. Nowadays there is a new ethic reigning, and you won't see many folks on this forum piping up to admit that they do this kind of thing now.

I hardly collect at all, but I view this bill with great anticipation-because it will free herpers from the suspicion and harassment to which we've been subjected over the last four years, and eliminate the trumped-up excuses for tickets given by GWs during that time (i.e. ticketing herpers for having a snake in the vehicle). It's as simple as that.

Also-welcome to the FHF! :)

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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by BChambers » June 25th, 2011, 6:04 am

kvargas wrote:
Some of the main reasons why an animal is taken out of the wild is either to be sold, given away, or to be put in somebody’s personal collection. The bottom line is that the animal was taken out of the wild, regardless of one’s intentions. Period.

Kyle
As I pointed out above, the difference is numbers and IMPACT. I personally see about 100-200 wild herps a year, and collect from zero to a couple of those. If I were a commercial collector, I'd collect 100-200-in fact more because my need to make a living would compel me to spend a LOT more time out in the field hunting!

And again, welcome to FHF-eveidently there are a lot more commercial collection supporters among our lurkers! ;)

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-EJ
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Re: TX HB1788 becomes law...

Post by -EJ » June 25th, 2011, 6:11 am

I'm pretty confident in saying that is not the case. Look at the posts over the years. I'm sure there are idiots who monitor these forums (You gotta realize this is not the only one.) but I'm also confident that there are those who monitor forums such as this realise the sincerity of the majority of the participants.
BChambers wrote:
kvargas wrote:
And again, welcome to FHF-eveidently there are a lot more commercial collection supporters among our lurkers! ;)

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