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The gloves are OFF!

Flaviemys purvisi

Very Well-Known Member
Trusted Seller
Sounds like a very long and wordy way of saying "It's my job to patiently tolerate listening to you before proceeding with the awkward task of telling you that you have to follow the rules. I was chosen for this task as someone who isn't involved in making the rules and can't change them anyway"
Yeah you're probably right.... But like Marc said to me, "Kev, policy is policy, it is NOT law. No one is going to persecute you for refusing to put the eggs of a critically endangered species in the freezer, it'd be like standing up on national television eating a s**t sandwich and saying this tastes yummy" Who's going to want to be the one to put their hand up and throw the book at me??
 

dragonlover1

Very Well-Known Member
Trusted Seller
Sounds like a very long and wordy way of saying "It's my job to patiently tolerate listening to you before proceeding with the awkward task of telling you that you have to follow the rules. I was chosen for this task as someone who isn't involved in making the rules and can't change them anyway"
my thoughts exactly, boofocratic double speak
 

Sdaji

Almost Legendary
APS Veteran
Trusted Seller
Yeah you're probably right.... But like Marc said to me, "Kev, policy is policy, it is NOT law. No one is going to persecute you for refusing to put the eggs of a critically endangered species in the freezer, it'd be like standing up on national television eating a s**t sandwich and saying this tastes yummy" Who's going to want to be the one to put their hand up and throw the book at me??
This is very true. Let them try to punish you for it, then challenge it, and there will probably be an interesting outcome. It's very difficult to imagine you being in severe trouble for refusing to kill endangered animals and it would be a good way to get egg on faces which need it and put some sense into the rules.
 

longirostris

Active Member
Sounds like a very long and wordy way of saying "It's my job to patiently tolerate listening to you before proceeding with the awkward task of telling you that you have to follow the rules. I was chosen for this task as someone who isn't involved in making the rules and can't change them anyway"
Yep agree with your assessment, pretty much exactly how I read the situation as well. For me, this is a whole pile of gobbledygook. I've seen this crap before, in fact I have been a part of a similar process at a NSW NPWS species list review meeting three years ago. What an absolute waste of attendees time. Twenty two people in the room including about 4 or 5 of us who were there covering our own costs and not actually being paid as employees of some interest group or government department and at the end of the day all the 6 hour talk fest could agree on was when to hold the next meeting and how to treat hybrid carpet python species in a revised keepers schedule, (which we still haven't seen) and not much else. The whole thing was a joke with certain NPWS employees that were in attendance barely able to contain their obvious contempt for our position. Not to mention the obligatory lobbyists in attendance from several of the larger animal welfare groups in the country. During the course of the meeting I had the opportunity to argue for 4 or 5 additional species of dragon to be added to the NSW keepers lists. I suggested that these species were classified as least concern on the IUCN red list which was confirmed by one of the other attendees who is actually responsible for nominating status of Australian species on the red list. I also pointed out that these species could be legally acquired through take from the wild collect permits in other states of Australia, a process I am a strong advocate for as most people will already know. I think that was a bridge too far for the loonies because next thing I know I had half the room crawling all over me. At one point I had a particular NPWS employee barely out of university and clearly with a god complex tell me categorically that once any animal is removed from the wild it has ZERO ecological value and may as well be dead and that is pretty much how they viewed the wildlife keeping/keeper activity. My immediate retort was if this is so then why are we forced to suffer lodging annual returns and keeping records. She fluffed a ridiculous answer and moved away. It won't surprise anyone that I did not get asked to attend the next keepers list review meeting 3 months later. I know I have digressed here, but I wanted to introduce some context into what I think these guys are up against.

Unfortunately on this matter, I see some serious issues with these new rules in QLD and an uphill battle to change them. For me though. the biggest problem is that wildlife keepers as a collective do not have a viable, coordinated and strong advocacy group for our rights and voice as private keepers and hobbyists. I could see issues like this coming when these regulations were at the proposal stage and they were calling for submissions from interested parties and members of the public back in June 2018. I recall a conversation I had with a well known and respected keeper in QLD at that time where I told that person that I had written to the minister responsible at DES in QLD about the content and intent of the proposed changes to their licensing and keeping regulations and asked the person I was speaking to if they were going to do the same thing. The response I got was "nah, I don't keep anything that is controversial or unusual so I am not going to bother, it doesn't affect me." At that point I knew there was little if any hope of changing any aspect of what was proposed and I remember posting on this forum at the time that apathetic keepers in QLD will get exactly what was proposed in the review, a regulation process that is even worse than what they had before the review was conducted. Unfortunately the gate was not attended to and the horse has since bolted to use a metaphor and now they are faced with an uphill battle to try and correct what can only be described as a monumental bureaucratic stuff up, that has ridiculous outcomes that nobody except the welfare lobbyists and PETA type radicals and loonies want.

I hope you guys with these turtles can get common sense to prevail with these ridiculous regulations they are trying to force onto you, I really do, I just wish that you, that WE had our own STRONG advocacy group like an NRA that had a respected voice and some clout, that could actually force the Government Bureaucracy to listen and more importantly act favorably to your and our advice and concerns. I think you are going to be hard to hear over the noise from the welfare lobbyists, animal rights groups, environmentalists and extinction rebellion activists all demanding the ear of Government and threatening political careers if their views are not acted upon. It is going to be a tough sell I think.

I hope for everybody's sake you can pull it off.

Mark Hawker
 

-Adam-

Active Member
Less than 12 hours after this letter was sent, both Myself and Marc Dorse were raided by the QLD DES. So I can assure you this is having MAXIMUM impact as the ranger who visited me said this has kicked over a hornet's nest and opened up a whole can of worms that he personally wants no part of.

This to me in itself is significantly concerning. This is more what I would expect of Eastern Germany, or other like countries - NOT what is supposed to be a free and 'fair' country such as Australia. If this was done as retaliation - another hornets nest needs to be kicked over!!!

More bureaucrats in government seem to be getting away with bullying tactics and the direction this country's governments are heading (at a fast rate) is quite concerning to some of us who have lived long enough to know a bit of history and where this can lead!

If this is the attitude of those in power, then it's no wonder that they can't come up with decent regulations or have an understanding of what's going on in the real world. Good on ya mate for standing up to them!
 

dragonlover1

Very Well-Known Member
Trusted Seller
This was the attitude from the gubberment back in 1854 and look what happened then . If the people in power aren't careful it could happen again, we aren't plebs who cower down and do as we are ordered. There have been enough protests lately to warn them that people won't take much more. I'm not keen on a civil war or uprising but it looks like we are heading in that direction unfortunately.
 

Flaviemys purvisi

Very Well-Known Member
Trusted Seller
I hope you guys with these turtles can get common sense to prevail with these ridiculous regulations they are trying to force onto you, I really do, I just wish that you, that WE had our own STRONG advocacy group like an NRA that had a respected voice and some clout, that could actually force the Government Bureaucracy to listen and more importantly act favorably to your and our advice and concerns. I think you are going to be hard to hear over the noise from the welfare lobbyists, animal rights groups, environmentalists and extinction rebellion activists all demanding the ear of Government and threatening political careers if their views are not acted upon. It is going to be a tough sell I think.

I hope for everybody's sake you can pull it off.
Hi mate, great comment and yes you are correct. We however have one major ace up our sleeve.. Myself and Marc Dorse have unlocked this species' secrets, (separately without collaboration with one another prior 2021) and have been captive breeding them for almost a decade now at ZERO cost to the Australian Government and Aussie taxpayers... Now... while Marc is the first documented breeder of the species in captivity, his hatch/survival rates are substantially less than mine and I have given him some pointers as to what he's been doing wrong and what he needs to change so that this coming season will yield him far better results, 2021/22 will be a huge season for purvisi in QLD. Now when a policy is introduced that renders our combined proven efforts/activities "illegal" yet allows for a reptile park to A. remove animals from the wild for the purpose of captive breeding and B, secure government AND taxpayer funding to the tune of $970,000 (so far) to do so for ZERO result.... it leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of ALL involved when a couple of "nobody hobbyists" in QLD are doing it already... Hiding behind a zoo title and being backed by crowd funding and government grants doesn't mean a damn thing in the REAL world. I'm not a 9-5 employee, My turtles are in my home, there's hatchlings in tanks on my office desk, there's incubators beside my bed, there's a mattress with a pillow and blanket on the floor beside my main breeding tanks... You only get out what you put in, you can't just buy results.

There's a lot of bureaucratic nonsense, gobblygook and doubletalk but at the end of the day facts are still facts. I can produce purvisi hatchies every season for the next 50 straight years for $0.00.... and if I refuse to destroy them, who's going to hang me for it?? Andrew Mullens from QPWS told Marc and I just this week that it would never happen.

The road is long and the hill is steep but we will prevail... of this I am certain.
 

dragonlover1

Very Well-Known Member
Trusted Seller
Hi mate, great comment and yes you are correct. We however have one major ace up our sleeve.. Myself and Marc Dorse have unlocked this species' secrets, (separately without collaboration with one another prior 2021) and have been captive breeding them for almost a decade now at ZERO cost to the Australian Government and Aussie taxpayers... Now... while Marc is the first documented breeder of the species in captivity, his hatch/survival rates are substantially less than mine and I have given him some pointers as to what he's been doing wrong and what he needs to change so that this coming season will yield him far better results, 2021/22 will be a huge season for purvisi in QLD. Now when a policy is introduced that renders our combined proven efforts/activities "illegal" yet allows for a reptile park to A. remove animals from the wild for the purpose of captive breeding and B, secure government AND taxpayer funding to the tune of $970,000 (so far) to do so for ZERO result.... it leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of ALL involved when a couple of "nobody hobbyists" in QLD are doing it already... Hiding behind a zoo title and being backed by crowd funding and government grants doesn't mean a damn thing in the REAL world. I'm not a 9-5 employee, My turtles are in my home, there's hatchlings in tanks on my office desk, there's incubators beside my bed, there's a mattress with a pillow and blanket on the floor beside my main breeding tanks... You only get out what you put in, you can't just buy results.

There's a lot of bureaucratic nonsense, gobblygook and doubletalk but at the end of the day facts are still facts. I can produce purvisi hatchies every season for the next 50 straight years for $0.00.... and if I refuse to destroy them, who's going to hang me for it?? Andrew Mullens from QPWS told Marc and I just this week that it would never happen.

The road is long and the hill is steep but we will prevail... of this I am certain.
Keep up the good fight Kev, I know you have the tenacity of your miniature foxies . Keep nagging the gubberment boofocrats until they give up.
 

Sdaji

Almost Legendary
APS Veteran
Trusted Seller
Set up an online zoom call and make sure to stream it ;)

Haha, definitely! When the so-called conservation department of the government simultaneously demands some people freeze the offpring of an endangered species to kill them (????#&@^@&) and watches as others get huge grants to take them from the wild and fail to breed them, the bigger the audience the better!
 

longirostris

Active Member
Haha, definitely! When the so-called conservation department of the government simultaneously demands some people freeze the offpring of an endangered species to kill them (????#&@^@&) and watches as others get huge grants to take them from the wild and fail to breed them, the bigger the audience the better!
I wonder how many turtles have been washed out to sea in the recent flooding on the NSW North Coast and mid north coast. I wouldn't mind betting that the endangered populations that used to be there before the floods are probably now critically endangered if not possibly wiped out or functionally extinct.
Hi mate, great comment and yes you are correct. We however have one major ace up our sleeve.. Myself and Marc Dorse have unlocked this species' secrets, (separately without collaboration with one another prior 2021) and have been captive breeding them for almost a decade now at ZERO cost to the Australian Government and Aussie taxpayers... Now... while Marc is the first documented breeder of the species in captivity, his hatch/survival rates are substantially less than mine and I have given him some pointers as to what he's been doing wrong and what he needs to change so that this coming season will yield him far better results, 2021/22 will be a huge season for purvisi in QLD. Now when a policy is introduced that renders our combined proven efforts/activities "illegal" yet allows for a reptile park to A. remove animals from the wild for the purpose of captive breeding and B, secure government AND taxpayer funding to the tune of $970,000 (so far) to do so for ZERO result.... it leaves a bitter taste in the mouths of ALL involved when a couple of "nobody hobbyists" in QLD are doing it already... Hiding behind a zoo title and being backed by crowd funding and government grants doesn't mean a damn thing in the REAL world. I'm not a 9-5 employee, My turtles are in my home, there's hatchlings in tanks on my office desk, there's incubators beside my bed, there's a mattress with a pillow and blanket on the floor beside my main breeding tanks... You only get out what you put in, you can't just buy results.

There's a lot of bureaucratic nonsense, gobblygook and doubletalk but at the end of the day facts are still facts. I can produce purvisi hatchies every season for the next 50 straight years for $0.00.... and if I refuse to destroy them, who's going to hang me for it?? Andrew Mullens from QPWS told Marc and I just this week that it would never happen.

The road is long and the hill is steep but we will prevail... of this I am certain.
Here is my thoughts on a media story for the message to get out there. "There is growing concern at just how much wildlife including rare and unique turtles have been washed out to sea in the recent catastrophic 1 in a 100 year flooding event on the NSW north and mid north coasts. Of particular concern would be turtle species that are found only in single rivers that have been absolutely inundated. It is entirely possible if not probable that several previously endangered species including the Manning River Turtle (Flaviemys purvisi) are probably now critically endangered if not wiped out or been rendered functionally extinct in the wild as a result of this disaster. Thank goodness that a captively held (private and public) and bred (by private keepers only) population exists because it is highly likely about to become a rescue and recovery population. Private wildlife keepers have argued for years with the bureaucracy at NSW NPWS that they should support and consider the activities of private keepers as a valuable resource with the potential to mitigate extinction risk with rescue and recovery populations in the event of these types of disasters. Private wildlife keepers have repeatedly suggested the current situation was always going to happen with at existentially at risk species. A single weather event like we have just had or fire disaster similar to the 2019-2020 fires and one or more entire species could be potentially wiped out. Why the conservationist elements in Government and government wildlife and regulatory authorities can't or probably more to the point choose not to see the benefits of privately held and bred wildlife as a backstop in the event of natural disasters is a serious issue that should be investigated. Clearly there is some biased if not bigoted short sightedness with ignoring some of benefits that private wildlife keepers can provide for conservation efforts of the wildlife they keep. If ever there was an argument for the contribution private wildlife keeping and breeding of endangered wildlife can have as a potential source for rescue and recovery populations then surely here it is"

I think the media should eat this up. What do you think Kev, maybe its time to go to the media and start telling your story, our story. Most journalists don't actually know how to write let alone do something original, you generally have to give the copy to them on a silver platter so I thought I would get the ball rolling with this little opinion piece. You are welcome to use it however you want including binning it or chopping it up etc. I just wanted to offer some support for a fight worth fighting, don't give up.

Mark Hawker
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Haha, definitely! When the so-called conservation department of the government simultaneously demands some people freeze the offpring of an endangered species to kill them (????#&@^@&) and watches as others get huge grants to take them from the wild and fail to breed them, the bigger the audience the better!

I don't want to hijack Kev's thread, but I want to build on your comments about the ludicrous situation of quasi government authorities and grants. Probably about ten or so years ago, I came across a guy who was breeding Tymapanocryptis centralis, the Centralian Earless dragon. I had kept and bred these myself for probably 8 - 10 years or so before that. My population had crashed and died out and I wanted to replace them so I ended up with 10 or 12 of these little guys from him.

Any way long story short, this guy was actually a resident of the ACT and highly placed in the executive of the local herpetological Association. He was actually approached by the wildlife regulatory authority in the ACT to gauge his interest in participating in a Government sanctioned breeding program for the critically endangered Tympanocryptis pinguicolla, (recently reclassified as Tympanocryptis lineata). He mentioned his potential involvement in this program to me at the time and the fact that the authorities had approached him because of his experience with breeding 2 species of earless dragons. Wow I thought, how good is this. Finally a far sighted wildlife regulator that actually sees the benefit in involving private keepers and breeders in rescue and recovery breeding programs. I was genuinely excited, not the least of which was because of the potential for the species to come into the private wildlife keeping fraternity. I have always had a strong interest in Earless dragons and was keen to see this species being bred in captivity.

Anyway, nothing came of the approach and I heard nothing further about this program until 5 or 6 years ago when I saw a media article (ABC TV news story) trumpeting the success of one of the universities in the ACT (Canberra University I think) with their captive breeding program that they had been working on for several years. What really irked me was that they had just been awarded $380,000 in government grants to continue their "trailblazing efforts as the first to breed the species in captivity". This new grant was over and above a previous grant to get the program up and running. I was told the university convinced the ACT government to use them and keep private individuals out of the whole process.

I have no doubt that had any of a number of committed private keepers including myself been given the same opportunities to access the species through collect from the wild permits we would have bred the bloody things for nothing, NO cost what so ever to the government. Yet, somehow or another the efforts of the people at the university were lauded as ground breaking and worthy of TV coverage. What a croc of s... At the time of this groundbreaking success at the university I had already bred 5 of the 9 or 10 known species at the time.

Why does this stuff happen. As I say I would have bred them for nothing. No need for a grant, yet nearly half a million dollars get's thrown at a university to do exactly what I have been doing for years. Like I say the huha over this whole process just thoroughly p...ed me off, because there was never any opportunity for private individuals to make a contribution because of the crappy attitudes of the authorities and the universities peddling their own agenda, their so called expertise and the need to fund that so called expertise.

This type of crap has got to stop. Sure, fund the universities, but don't restrict the opportunity for others particularly private individuals to make a contribution to the field of herpetology in order to justify the funding process to those universities.

Mark Hawker
 
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