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FWC offering exotic pet amnesty day in Southwest Florida

FOX 4 Staff

FWC offering exotic pet amnesty day in Southwest Florida

CREATED Feb. 26, 2013

FORT MYERS, Fla. - The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) along with Southwest Florida Invasive Species Management area will hold an Exotic Pet Amnesty Day on Saturday, March 2.

The event will allow people to surrender their nonnative pets free of charge.  The event will take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the Calusa Nature Center and Planetarium in Fort Myers.

The goal is to reduce the number of nonnative species being released into the wild by pet owners who can no longer care for the animals or no longer wish to keep them.

"Often, pet owners don't understand the possible negative impacts that may result from releasing a nonnative species," said Jenny Novak, who coordinates the FWC's Exotic Pet Amnesty Program.  "Pet amnesty events foster responsible pet ownership while providing exotic pet owners a legal alternative to releasing nonnative animals.

Exotic Pet Amnesty Days have had great success in other areas of the state such as Miami.

The Calusa Nature Center & Planetarium is at 3450 Ortiz Avenue Fort Myers, FL 33905.