|Mary Cummins, Los Angeles, Califonria, alpaca, llama, wildlife rehabilitation, los angeles, county,|
|Mary Cummins, Animal Advocates, zoning, amendment, los angeles, county, california|
WILD CRITTERS NO MORE LLAMAS, ALPACAS NOW ARE FARM ANIMALS.(News)
Daily News (Los Angeles, CA)
January 25, 2006 |
Byline: Karen Maeshiro Staff Writer
Llamas and alpacas are now officially livestock instead of ``wild animals'' in Los Angeles County, legitimizing their breeding in rural areas of the Antelope Valley and elsewhere in Los Angeles County.
The change came about in part because of an Antelope Valley couple who wanted to raise alpacas but found that the county classification of the South American mammal as a wild animal prohibited them on their agriculturally zoned property.
``We listed them as wild animals in the county code. The state does not list them like that,'' county planner Leonard Erlanger said. ``We took them off and are treating them like horses and cows. …
County relaxes restrictions on llamas, animal rehab
By Troy Anderson, Staff Writer
POSTED: 01/25/06, 12:01 AM PST | 0 COMMENTS
Los Angeles County officials gave animal lovers some good news Tuesday, making it legal to operate small wildlife rehabilitation facilities in unincorporated areas and easing rules for raising llamas and alpacas.
The practice of rehabilitating small wildlife had been illegal in unincorporated areas but legal in the city of Los Angeles.
"I'm ecstatic," said Mary Cummins, president of the nonprofit animal rescue organization Animal Advocates, which has a wildlife permit to operate in the city. "This amendment will help protect the public and save animals."
Cummins said about 50 people and organizations have been illegally rehabilitating thousands of wild animals each year in the county.
Last year, wild animal rehabilitators saved more than 80,000 animals statewide, including bobcats, skunks, opossums, racoons, wild mice and pack rats, Cummins said.
The new ordinance approved by the Board of Supervisors will allow facilities to temporarily care for sick or injured small wild animals until they become healthy and can be put back in their native habitat, said Department of Regional Planning Ordinance Studies Section official Leonard Erlanger.
The new ordinance also is expected to help relieve the county's overburdened animal shelters.
"We do occasionally get opossums," said Brenda Sanchez, spokeswoman for the county Department of Animal Care and Control. "A lot them are either trapped by residents in the area or injured and we have to euthanize them."
The state Department of Fish and Game requires all licensed wildlife rehabilitation facilities to show they have zoning clearances before it will grant a wildlife rehabilitation permit.
Before Tuesday's vote, the county did not have a mechanism to provide such clearances.
Under the new ordinance, people seeking to operate such a facility will need to obtain a state permit for the animals. Under the new requirements, the animals also must be indigenous to the county, weigh less than 30 pounds and cannot be dangerous, such as bears and mountain lions.
The provision also limits the number of animals in a facility to 20, but that limit could be waived under some circumstances.
The supervisors also voted to make it easier for people to raise llamas and alpacas in unincorporated areas.
Currently, the county's zoning laws refer to alpacas and llamas as wild animals and prohibits them in light agricultural areas - which essentially precludes Antelope Valley residents from raising the animals.
The new ordinance allows the animals in light agricultural areas and classifies them as pets that can be kept in residentially zoned areas - just like horses, cattle, sheep and goats.
It was in Best Friends Animal Sanctuary,
"No Horsing Around, You Can Leep Llamas & Alpacas"
Our press release
PRWeb: Los Angeles County to allow licensed wildlife rehabilitation
Today the Board of Supervisors of the County of Los Angeles approved an amendment to Planning and Zoning which would allow for the licensed rehabilitation of small wild animals in the County. Currently the California Department of Fish & Game permits licensed wildlife rehabilitators to treat ill, injured and orphaned wildlife for release back to the wild. Their permits are only valid if their work does not conflict with any other regulations or ordinances.
Mary Cummins President of Animal Advocates had been working on this amendment for over two years with Alyson Stewart and Leonard Erlanger of the Department of Regional Planning. "I am very grateful that the County of Los Angeles will now allow the licensed rehabilitation of small wild animals," stated Cummins. "This will allow us to have rehabbers in the County where they are so desperately needed."
Wildlife rehabilitators provide an essential service to the public and wildlife. Without rehabbers sometimes well meaning members of the public try to care for the animals themselves which can pose a danger to the person and animal. It is actually illegal for anyone to keep a wild animal over 48 hours without a permit. Rehabbers also pick up wildlife from local animal shelters besides providing public education about wildlife and humane wildlife control.
Currently Animal Advocates rehabilitates small wildlife such as bobcats, raccoons, skunks, opossums, squirrels and chipmunks rehabbing over 1,300 wild animals in 2005. In 2004 over 80,000 wild animals were rescued in California by state wildlife rehabilitators. Wildlife rehabilitators provide this service free of charge and most are 501 3c corporations such as Animal Advocates.
Transcript of the meeting January 24, 2006
15 SUP. ANTONOVICH, MAYOR: OKAY. MARY CUMMINS. MARY? JUST GIVE
16 YOUR NAME FOR THE RECORD.
18 MARY CUMMINS: I'M MARY CUMMINS, PRESIDENT OF ANIMAL ADVOCATES.
19 I'M A FISH AND GAME LICENSED WILDLIFE REHABILITATOR, EDUCATOR
20 AND EXHIBITER. I'D LIKE TO THANK THE PLANNING COMMISSION,
21 ESPECIALLY LEONARD AND ALLISON, FOR ALL THE HARD WORK IN
22 GETTING THIS AMENDMENT THIS FAR. THIS AMENDMENT WILL HELP
23 PROTECT THE PUBLIC AND SAVE ANIMALS. SOMEWHERE ALONG THE WAY,
24 MINIMUM LOT SIZES AND MAXIMUM ANIMAL COUNTS WERE ADDED TO THE
25 PROPOSED AMENDMENT. NOW, IF YOU'RE TALKING LLAMAS AND ALPACAS,
1 LARGE ANIMALS, THAT MAKES SENSE BUT THIS AMENDMENT IS JUST FOR
2 SMALL MAMMALS, JUST SMALL SUCH AS SQUIRRELS AND OPOSSUMS. NOW,
3 A BABY SQUIRREL IS ABOUT AN INCH LONG AND I CAN FIT 20 BABY
4 OPOSSUMS INTO A TEASPOON. I LIVE ON AN AVERAGE LOT WHICH IS
5 6,500 SQUARE FEET. I'D ONLY BE ABLE TO HAVE FIVE WILD ANIMALS,
6 MAXIMUM. NOW, LEGALLY, FIVE BABY SQUIRRELS MUST BE KEPT IN AN
7 INCUBATOR, WHICH IS A TUPPERWARE CONTAINER ABOUT 10 GALLONS. I
8 DON'T THINK I NEED A 6,500-SQUARE-FOOT LOT TO HAVE A 10-GALLON
9 TUPPERWARE CONTAINER IN MY HOUSE. AND I'M IN THE CITY OF L.A.,
10 FORTUNATELY. I CAN HAVE AS MANY WILD ANIMALS AS I CAN LEGALLY
11 HOUSE. CURRENTLY, THE FISH AND GAME AND U.S.D.A. ANIMAL
12 WELFARE REGULATIONS SEVERELY RESTRICT THE NUMBER OF ANIMALS
13 THAT WE MAY HAVE. THEY HAVE MINIMUM AND MAXIMUM CAGING SIZES,
14 WHICH GO DOWN TO THE CUBIC INCH AND WE ARE ALREADY HEAVILY
15 RESTRICTED AND I DON'T FEEL THAT THE MINIMUM LOT SIZE AND
16 MAXIMUM NUMBERS ARE NECESSARY. I'D LIKE TO ASK THAT THAT WOULD
17 BE REMOVED FROM THE REQUIREMENTS. I WAS JUST SPEAKING WITH
18 SOMEONE EARLIER OVER HERE AND HE STATED THAT THEY MIGHT BE
19 ABLE TO FIND A WAY AROUND THAT AND THAT WOULD BE ACCEPTABLE TO
20 ME IF THAT WOULD BE APPROVED.
Mary Cummins of Animal Advocates is a wildlife rehabilitator licensed by the California Department of Fish and Game and the USDA. Mary Cummins is also a licensed real estate appraiser in Los Angeles, California.
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