Question about importing animals, customs, air flights etc

Question about importing animals, customs, air flights etc

Postby Spracklcat » Fri Feb 29, 2008 4:00 pm

Hello everyone,

I'm travelling to South Africa in a few months and am entertaining the idea of bringing some fish that are difficult to get here in the US back with me. I'm researching customs, US fish and Wildlife, etc, and from what I've seen and been told, the best way to do it is to declare the fish as pets.

Does anyone have any experience with international transport of fish?

Thanks
:)
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Postby FMarini » Fri Feb 29, 2008 4:19 pm

HI Christine--
I came back w/ blue Dempsey cichilds from Buenos Aires 2 yrs ago, took em on the plane in my cooler. They aren't protected and did little more than fill out all the appropiate paperwork and had them examined by fish/wildlife in Custom at BA. Said they were my pets as well.
I had to convince the guys at the metal detector to not run these fish thru, just incase the radiation dose was lethal.
Not sure I can help much more esp i don't know the laws in Africa
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Postby vaporize » Fri Feb 29, 2008 4:36 pm

are they still subject to the wildlife inspection fees and importation permits if they are "pets"?
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Postby Spracklcat » Fri Feb 29, 2008 5:12 pm

Thanks guys--the additional layer of trouble is that they are seahorses, ans Hippocampus are CITES II. From what I can tell CITES II aren't restricted, just monitored, but I want to check everything before I get them to US customs and have them confiscate them. Although, when marine fishes are confiscated at New York Ports they are often brought to Atlantis Marine World, and I know the curator... :P

Frank, do you recall the forms you used for US F & W? And did you need a veterinarian signoff before they were "exported"?
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Postby vaporize » Fri Feb 29, 2008 5:24 pm

CITIES II organisms, like seahorses and corals require an export CITIES permit issued by the exporting country in order to legally import into another CITIES regulated country.

You might have better luck working with a coral wholesaler over there at South Africa to get that arranged. I assume this is another "C" trip :) CITIES permit does take some money & time to acquire especially for everyday person.

The easier way of course, is to get it confusicated ^_^
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Postby DrHsu » Sat Mar 01, 2008 10:01 am

Hi Christine,

I'm not that familiar with US or SA laws but I have had friends bring fish back to the US from here. I understand that you will need to get some kind of a permit beforehand so you can declare the fish with it when you get back. I'm also quite sure you will have to name the species beforehand. Don't believe you need to be accurate with the numbers or species so long as they are less than stated ie don't bring in unlisted species.

For CITES listed species, you will have to get an export permit. I think a CITES import permit is optional but for the US you should probably check it out beforehand - I got into a little tiff with someone on RC who insisted it was not possible to import any CITES II species into the US unless it was captive bred :shock: :?: :evil: :roll:

Anyway, hope you are able to get what you want.....my wish list from SA - Gem Tangs and Tiger Angels :D
Li Chieh

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Postby Greshamh » Sat Mar 01, 2008 12:22 pm

CITES optional? Not in this country. CITES Appendix II are restricted in all senses and require CITES docs from the exporting country. Look at it this way, would they allow you to bring in SPS into this country as a hobbyist with out CITES docs? Nope.

To get stuff out of the US legally you have to have export permits, even for fish. Fish take ~2 to get the docs and CITES items take ~2 weeks and require the import CITES permits for the items to be submitted with you application.

CITES I IIRC is the only one where the CB tag applies. The poster was wrong but couldn't back down ;)
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Postby Spracklcat » Sun Mar 02, 2008 10:52 pm

Thanks guys--

I'm willing to try to get the US fish and Wildlife permits, and thee CITES documents, but what is stumping me now is that you need a veterinarian's note before you leave the country of origin. So if I buy form a hobbyist, I have to find a vet and get the fish checked out? Sheesh.

At this point I'm looking for easier ways--like finding out which exporter my South African friend got his seahorses from (in Singapore coincidentally) and see if I can get a wholesaler to import them special order.
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Re:

Postby DrHsu » Mon Mar 03, 2008 4:29 am

Spracklcat wrote:Thanks guys--

I'm willing to try to get the US fish and Wildlife permits, and thee CITES documents, but what is stumping me now is that you need a veterinarian's note before you leave the country of origin. So if I buy form a hobbyist, I have to find a vet and get the fish checked out? Sheesh.

At this point I'm looking for easier ways--like finding out which exporter my South African friend got his seahorses from (in Singapore coincidentally) and see if I can get a wholesaler to import them special order.

Christine,

Just let me know who it is - I pretty much know all the bigger players here, although it could have gone through a consolidator (with other freshwater stuff etc) Right now there are Reidii and pot bellieds here...
Li Chieh

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"It's what you learn after you think you know it all..that matters" - Anon
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Postby Spracklcat » Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:16 am

Do you know who has the pot-bellies? I can't get the name of the person in singapore exporting them--the importer in South Africa won't tell anyone, is making it a big secret.
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Re:

Postby DrHsu » Mon Mar 03, 2008 9:02 am

Spracklcat wrote:Do you know who has the pot-bellies? I can't get the name of the person in singapore exporting them--the importer in South Africa won't tell anyone, is making it a big secret.
Yes....they are here at an importer's now. They are captive bred out of Australia. Nice condition and all eating frozen mysis well. I'll PM you the details...
Li Chieh

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"It's what you learn after you think you know it all..that matters" - Anon
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Postby Spracklcat » Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:33 am

Thank you! That will be much easier it seems. The process is not impossible, but a lot of work. We may yet use it to bring back some intersting non-CITES fishes, but event hat is tough because of the veterinary certificate, and the fact that you have to submit forms ahead of time saying what you want to brin gback--which means you can't just go shopping.
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Postby Hobbo73 » Sun Mar 23, 2008 9:16 pm

Hi all

I was woundering if you had tried the Australian producer direct as i am sure that they may already export to the US? if you send me a pm i will be able to supply you with their contact details as i have these for at least 3 or 4 Australian seahorse breeders (sorry i dont know the rules here as to listing them on site).

Cheers

Andrew
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Postby Spracklcat » Mon Mar 24, 2008 3:26 pm

Yes, actually I have a contact with the importer in Singapore. Thanks for the ofer :)
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