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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
After 12 months of planning and searching for premises National Reptile Rescue has a home. : victory:: victory:: victory:
We got the keys yesterday and now just need to tidy and kit out the centre.

How can you help?

If you have any equipment, bowls, vivs, lights etc you no longer require maybe you could donate them to us.

For our official opening day we have arranged a couple of surprises . . . more details as we get them.
:2thumb::2thumb::2thumb::2thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Are you planning on being open to the public every day?
Our plan is to be open 7 days a week with only a few exceptions during the year
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Nice one.
How hard was it to get your zoo licence sorted out and how much did they charge you for it?

Natrix
Local Authority have only insisted on a Pet Shop Licence due to technicalities of eggs hatching the resulting babies would not be classified as rescued
 

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But you will be displaying animals that are not usually considered domestic to the general public. That means that you will need a zoo licence.

While your local council may be happy with you having a pet shop licence now, you are not a pet shop and things will change very quickly if you and they come under attack from the animal rights groups that are against what you are trying to do.

Check out News there are lots of other cases as well if you search the web.

Natrix
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Hmm so what you are saying is that the reptile shops all over the UK are going to be closed as they are selling animals that arn't pets

Tortoises require a licenses under Defra regulations

Bearded Dragons, Geckos, Corn Snakes and Royal Pythons do not
 

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Hmm so what you are saying is that the reptile shops all over the UK are going to be closed as they are selling animals that arn't pets

Tortoises require a licenses under Defra regulations

Bearded Dragons, Geckos, Corn Snakes and Royal Pythons do not
No, what I am saying is that animal sanctuaries aren't pet shops and so don't come under a pet shop licence.

I'm also saying that reptiles aren't considered domestic pets so if you are going to be displaying them as a sanctuary to the public for more than seven days in a one year period you will attract the attention of certain, so called, animal welfare groups and at that point your local council will be talking about a zoo licence to you.

Natrix
 

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Hmm so what you are saying is that the reptile shops all over the UK are going to be closed as they are selling animals that arn't pets

Tortoises require a licenses under Defra regulations

Bearded Dragons, Geckos, Corn Snakes and Royal Pythons do not
Correct, that's an article 10 under CITIES Regulations. I'm not talking about an article 10, I'm talking about a zoo licence.

Natrix
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If we were a sanctuary we would need a zoo licence but the reptiles that come into us are then rehomed. Our local authority have worked with us every step of the way and even had the legal team involved.

So what you are saying if I opened a shop and sold the reptile surrendered to me then that would be OK!
 

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If we were a sanctuary we would need a zoo licence but the reptiles that come into us are then rehomed. Our local authority have worked with us every step of the way and even had the legal team involved.

So what you are saying if I opened a shop and sold the reptile surrendered to me then that would be OK!
From the Born free web site

Since the introduction of the Zoo Licensing Act which came into force in 1984 and the subsequent Zoos Directive in 1999 which came into force in 2002, Born Free, has been consistently trying to get local authorities who are the responsible Licensing Authorities for establishments that display captive wild animals to the public, to ensure that all appropriate facilities that meet the criteria as set out in the legislation are licensed as zoos or officially exempted from the requirements of the Act.

From the zoo licencing act http://www.opsi.gov.uk/RevisedStatutes/Acts/ukpga/1981/cukpga_19810037_en_5

1 Licensing of zoos by local authorities
(1)Subject to this section it is unlawful to operate a zoo to which this Act applies except under the authority of a licence issued under this Act by the local authority for the area within which the whole or the major part of the zoo is situated.
(2)In this Act “zoo” means an establishment where wild animals (as defined by section 21) are kept for exhibition to the public otherwise than for purposes of a circus (as so defined) and otherwise than in a pet shop (as so defined)

So are you a pet shop or a rescue sanctuary?
Are you selling reptiles or displaying non domestic/wild animals to the public?

I'm not having a go at what your trying to do, I'm trying to point out to you that a pet shop licence is very unlikely to cover you if the Antis start pushing the council.
The sanctuaries in the links I posted all thought they was fine until they were suddenly required to get a zoo licence. You need to clarify this with your council and if possible get an exemption certificate in place before the antis start talking to them.

Natrix
 

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If we were a sanctuary we would need a zoo licence but the reptiles that come into us are then rehomed. Our local authority have worked with us every step of the way and even had the legal team involved.

So what you are saying if I opened a shop and sold the reptile surrendered to me then that would be OK!
Hoping another opinion might help here.

Basically the law states that
'Section 1 makes clear that all zoos that are open to the public, with or without charge on seven or more days in a twelve-month period need a licence from their local authority to operate. A zoo is defined as any establishment where animals of wild species are exhibited to the public. Circuses and pet shops are excluded from this definition (see paragraph 5
below). Local authorities in England are District, Unitary, Metropolitan, City of London and London Borough councils.'

http://www.biaza.org.uk/resources/library/images/ZLA CIrcular.pdf

I think what Natrix is getting at is because you are planning on opening the rescue up to people beyond 7 days a year you would fall under a zoo license. This has stung numerous rescue centres of late as Natrix has linked, resulting in them having to close. Im not saying your council is wrong but im sure its in your benefit to let them know about this so they can cover every base.

All the best with it, i can totally understand why you'd want people to see the good work you do but current legislation makes this kind of thing relatively difficult.
 

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It would not be the first time a council has got some thing wrong either, and sadly it wont be the last. Natrix is spot on with what he has been saying to you and is only doing so to help you avoid big problems down the road.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
OK the latest info from the councils legal team is

As there is an element of a technical sale the exchange of money to the centre in order to rehome a reptile then this makes us a Shop even though we are a not for profit organisation.

We have been further advised that any animal rescue service that does not have a Pet Shop License and accepts a "donation" to the centre when an animal is rehomed is potentially breaking the law under pet shop licensing (as this is a technical sale), therefore they require a license regardless of if the animal is rehomed from a private or business address. In addition appropriate planning (A1 consent) must be sought from the local authorities planning department.

The retail activities are there to provide funding for our rescue service, staff, vet fees, and other operational costs, just like the Dogs Trust, RSPCA etc...

Therefore although we are a rescue centre we are classified as a pet shop

I hope this clarifies the status of our Rescue Centre.
 

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NRR is not a registered charity I assume, and will be generally only allowing animals to leave the premises once a "donation" is paid". That would seem to come under pet shop licensing requirements to me. I assume there will be no admission fee ?

Is it the policy to NEVER sell bought in animals ?

Are the owners of the NRR going to get a "wage" or any other financial benefit from the sales in the shop ?

What does not for profit mean ?
 

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From the Born free web site

Since the introduction of the Zoo Licensing Act which came into force in 1984 and the subsequent Zoos Directive in 1999 which came into force in 2002, Born Free, has been consistently trying to get local authorities who are the responsible Licensing Authorities for establishments that display captive wild animals to the public, to ensure that all appropriate facilities that meet the criteria as set out in the legislation are licensed as zoos or officially exempted from the requirements of the Act.

From the zoo licencing act http://www.opsi.gov.uk/RevisedStatutes/Acts/ukpga/1981/cukpga_19810037_en_5

1 Licensing of zoos by local authorities
(1)Subject to this section it is unlawful to operate a zoo to which this Act applies except under the authority of a licence issued under this Act by the local authority for the area within which the whole or the major part of the zoo is situated.
(2)In this Act “zoo” means an establishment where wild animals (as defined by section 21) are kept for exhibition to the public otherwise than for purposes of a circus (as so defined) and otherwise than in a pet shop (as so defined)

So are you a pet shop or a rescue sanctuary?
Are you selling reptiles or displaying non domestic/wild animals to the public?

I'm not having a go at what your trying to do, I'm trying to point out to you that a pet shop licence is very unlikely to cover you if the Antis start pushing the council.
The sanctuaries in the links I posted all thought they was fine until they were suddenly required to get a zoo licence. You need to clarify this with your council and if possible get an exemption certificate in place before the antis start talking to them.

Natrix
Agreed with the above,

But can I just add if you are a "Rescue" and you are planning eggs from the animals then you are breeding the rescues which in my opinion is wrong !

Just seems like another "Rescue" using the words "Rescue" as a front for free animals ! I find it a bit strange that your a new member with limited amount of posts but your setting up a "Rescue" if your doing it for the right reasons then fair play to you for doing so.

But I would seriously listen and take note to what Natrix is telling you he knows what he's talking about.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Agreed with the above,

But can I just add if you are a "Rescue" and you are planning eggs from the animals then you are breeding the rescues which in my opinion is wrong !

Just seems like another "Rescue" using the words "Rescue" as a front for free animals ! I find it a bit strange that your a new member with limited amount of posts but your setting up a "Rescue" if your doing it for the right reasons then fair play to you for doing so.

But I would seriously listen and take note to what Natrix is telling you he knows what he's talking about.
I decided to open this centre as a result of people bringing reptiles to me.

From the NEGATIVITY I dont know why I dont just open a traditional shop and charge full prices for rescues like many shops do. You know nothing about the 5 years I have owned reptiles or the 30+ I personally have.

We dont want to rescue any reptiles the sad fact is more are being dumped as they are more available like more traditional pets. I dont believe that throwing away viable eggs form a female that has come in is right.

So it seems to me that I am going to be bullied and pushed into opening a traditional Reptile shop, something I did not want to do but then people on the forum appear to be against those wanting to do good.

Just seems like another "Rescue" using the words "Rescue" as a front for free animals
AS FOR FREE

We collected a Leopard Gecko from Southampton last year rehome fee was £10 our fuel cost was over £60. So the profit from this was -£50 not counting the food, heat etc for the 4 weeks he was with us.
 

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I decided to open this centre as a result of people bringing reptiles to me.

From the NEGATIVITY I dont know why I dont just open a traditional shop and charge full prices for rescues like many shops do. You know nothing about the 5 years I have owned reptiles or the 30+ I personally have.

We dont want to rescue any reptiles the sad fact is more are being dumped as they are more available like more traditional pets. I dont believe that throwing away viable eggs form a female that has come in is right.

So it seems to me that I am going to be bullied and pushed into opening a traditional Reptile shop, something I did not want to do but then people on the forum appear to be against those wanting to do good.
Just ignore them, some folks are too paranoid, you guys think even charities just work for nothing? It's literally not possible without donations, that's either charging people to look at animals, charging a donation if people want to adopt animals, possibly letting people sponser an animal etc, unless OP comes across millions of pounds to whittle away, they need some sort of income or supplementary income. Zoos have adopt an animal and their massive zoos with varies sources of revenue, if they have too, a person setting up a rescue certainly does, you think the government is going to hand OP £100,000 a year to build a nice reptile sanctuary?


Get real ffs...

As for "selling" offspring. If a rescued animal is gravid there's nothing wrong with him keeping viable eggs and caring for the offspring and hopefully giving them a home at some point, with a donation paid. Breeding is a bit different, though to be fair Zoos and rescue centres do often breed, to sell offspring to other centres, to keep the animals in the rescue(old ones die etc).
 

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I have to assume NRR since you haven't answered my questions that this is in fact a pet shop, but potentially with a more ethical stance than most.

How many of the animals are going to be rehomed ? If non/few then you will fill up very quickly. If you sell most/all of them then legally you are a pet shop

If you are taking a wage (the profits from sales in the shop) then I can't see how this is a not for profit organisation.

I hope you have, or are ready to register for income tax and national insurance contributions. You will need to.

Why does a leopard gecko need to be "rescued" ? Surely it must be easy to rehome locally ?

When I managed a reptile shop I sometimes took in animals with problems and helped to rehome them with customers I knew would take them and give them a good home, without money passing hands. Its good business, that customer ended up buying an extra tub of crickets in the future !
 
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