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There has been a great deal of confusion and speculation concerning the cancelation of the BRAS show. Unfortunately I was unavailable for the latter part of last week and at the London Pet Show all weekend so was unable to deal with the problems and the following backlash. I did manage to get onto the forums and make some posts but could not investigate properly until I returned yesterday. I have now carried out a more thorough investigation of the events surrounding the cancellation and I believe this statement to be an accurate assessment of the situation.

The anti-pet brigade spear-headed by the usual two fanatics have intensified their campaign against reptiles. They are concentrating on the risk of zoonoses and are pushing the line that reptiles somehow present more of a risk than any other species. As far as shows go they write to the venues with some pseudo-scientific claims that reptiles will contaminate the venue and pose a risk to future visitors. They are also making accusations that shows [private breeders meetings] are illegal under the Pet Animals Act, 1951, which is completely untrue.

Unfortunately many venue owners do become alarmed by this and then either try to pull the event or impose restrictions that make running the event impossible. We were able to have a presence at the London Pet Show held at Earls Court and were also able to run animals handling sessions in spite of a huge campaign by the fanatics to stop this going ahead. We were, however, forced to display a sign stating that contact with exotics was more of a risk than for other animals and were the only exhibit that needed to offer hand-washing facilities. Other animals were freely handled, including pigs, chickens, birds, dogs, cats and horses, with no risk notices or excessive hygiene precautions.

In the case of the BRAS show the organisers (not the venue) started to receive intimidating phone calls, death threats and bomb threats towards the end of last week. The police were made aware of the situation and the conclusion was reached that the organisers could not guarantee the safety of exhibitors or visitors and took the difficult decision to cancel in the interests of public safety.

The APA are claiming responsibility for cancellation of the show:
“Reptile market is cancelled thanks to prompt action by Barking & Dagenham Council”http://www.cisionwire.com/animal-protection-agency

Exhibitors were considered a particular risk as most are breeders who operate from premises with minimal security. Information concerning exhibitors is available to animal rights activists and in light of the serious nature of the threats it was considered that breeders were at high risk of terrorist attack.

All exhibitors will receive a full refund from BRAS who offer a full and unconditional apology for any inconvenience caused.

In light of recent events, and with the increased risk of animal rights attack, the FBH have drawn up guidelines to reduce risks. These are as follows:

  • Never allow strangers to visit your animal collection.
  • We advise caution in the manner in which animals are advertised.
  • Report any suspicious phone calls, including multiple hang-ups, to the police.
  • Try to ensure that security at your premises is adequate and install cameras or other devices if practical. Breeders, particularly breeders that attend shows, need to be particularly vigilant.
  • Don’t let threats and anti-social behaviour intimidate you and please continue to support your reptile shows and clubs.
We would also urge as many people as possible to come along to the FBH conference where a special session regarding terrorist/fanatic/animal rights activists will be held.

I do hope this makes things clear and I apologise for being unable to post a response earlier.

Chris Newman
Chairman – Federation of British Herpetologists

Issued 15th May, 2012
 

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Excellent post What a great pity that you were not available last week the problem would have not got out of hand. We must also be very vigilant over the lies that the antis put forward. Let us stand firm and together and not let
the muppets drive a wedge between us:notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy::notworthy:
 

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There has been a great deal of confusion and speculation concerning the cancelation of the BRAS show. Unfortunately I was unavailable for the latter part of last week and at the London Pet Show all weekend so was unable to deal with the problems and the following backlash. I did manage to get onto the forums and make some posts but could not investigate properly until I returned yesterday. I have now carried out a more thorough investigation of the events surrounding the cancellation and I believe this statement to be an accurate assessment of the situation.

The anti-pet brigade spear-headed by the usual two fanatics have intensified their campaign against reptiles. They are concentrating on the risk of zoonoses and are pushing the line that reptiles somehow present more of a risk than any other species. As far as shows go they write to the venues with some pseudo-scientific claims that reptiles will contaminate the venue and pose a risk to future visitors. They are also making accusations that shows [private breeders meetings] are illegal under the Pet Animals Act, 1951, which is completely untrue.

Unfortunately many venue owners do become alarmed by this and then either try to pull the event or impose restrictions that make running the event impossible. We were able to have a presence at the London Pet Show held at Earls Court and were also able to run animals handling sessions in spite of a huge campaign by the fanatics to stop this going ahead. We were, however, forced to display a sign stating that contact with exotics was more of a risk than for other animals and were the only exhibit that needed to offer hand-washing facilities. Other animals were freely handled, including pigs, chickens, birds, dogs, cats and horses, with no risk notices or excessive hygiene precautions.

In the case of the BRAS show the organisers (not the venue) started to receive intimidating phone calls, death threats and bomb threats towards the end of last week. The police were made aware of the situation and the conclusion was reached that the organisers could not guarantee the safety of exhibitors or visitors and took the difficult decision to cancel in the interests of public safety.

The APA are claiming responsibility for cancellation of the show:
“Reptile market is cancelled thanks to prompt action by Barking & Dagenham Council”http://www.cisionwire.com/animal-protection-agency

Exhibitors were considered a particular risk as most are breeders who operate from premises with minimal security. Information concerning exhibitors is available to animal rights activists and in light of the serious nature of the threats it was considered that breeders were at high risk of terrorist attack.

All exhibitors will receive a full refund from BRAS who offer a full and unconditional apology for any inconvenience caused.

In light of recent events, and with the increased risk of animal rights attack, the FBH have drawn up guidelines to reduce risks. These are as follows:

  • Never allow strangers to visit your animal collection.
  • We advise caution in the manner in which animals are advertised.
  • Report any suspicious phone calls, including multiple hang-ups, to the police.
  • Try to ensure that security at your premises is adequate and install cameras or other devices if practical. Breeders, particularly breeders that attend shows, need to be particularly vigilant.
  • Don’t let threats and anti-social behaviour intimidate you and please continue to support your reptile shows and clubs.
We would also urge as many people as possible to come along to the FBH conference where a special session regarding terrorist/fanatic/animal rights activists will be held.

I do hope this makes things clear and I apologise for being unable to post a response earlier.

Chris Newman
Chairman – Federation of British Herpetologists

Issued 15th May, 2012
Wonder how Ecoherp, et al will respond to this?
 

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The anti-pet brigade spear-headed by the usual two fanatics have intensified their campaign against reptiles. They are concentrating on the risk of zoonoses and are pushing the line that reptiles somehow present more of a risk than any other species.

We were, however, forced to display a sign stating that contact with exotics was more of a risk than for other animals and were the only exhibit that needed to offer hand-washing facilities. Other animals were freely handled, including pigs, chickens, birds, dogs, cats and horses, with no risk notices or excessive hygiene precautions.
I completely understand the need to ensure people have hygiene at the forefront of thier minds when dealing with animals, I always have the sanitiser gel etc to hand for after handling sessions. But what makes other animals, including pigs, chickens, etc, less of a risk.

A few years ago, a lot of petting zoos and wildlife parks had to close for a long time, and could only reopen when they ensured they had hand sanitizers at each enclosure, and made the public aware that they should use them.

Surely, every stall with handling options at the pet show should have ensured that hygiene was a priority for both humans and animals.



I refrained from saying anything about BRAS until an official statement was released. I think it is high getting time that we beccame more vocal against these Anti Types. Its one thing to stand outside a show calling us cruel, or even to put up fake videos of cruelty throughout shows, put to threaten physical and mortal danger against anybody, no matter what the crime, is down right deplorable.

Hands up for starting the Reptile Keepers Protection Agency (ReKPA), standing up for the safety of reptile keepers, against the antis! :lol2:


In seriousness, I hope more is done to educate the show venues on how these shows will be conducted. Ensure them that the biggest priority is for the health and wellbeing of both visitors and animals alike, and that any risk of zoonoses or other problems will be minimal, if not neglible.
 

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What are the police doing about this situation? Have the Anti-Terrorist Branch been informed? Surely terror threats are one of the most serious of crimes and those responsible should be looking at serving prison sentences. If you think that the police will take the initiative you are sorely mistaken. You will have to press them in to action and continue to pursue the matter with them in my experience.
 

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I completely understand the need to ensure people have hygiene at the forefront of thier minds when dealing with animals, I always have the sanitiser gel etc to hand for after handling sessions. But what makes other animals, including pigs, chickens, etc, less of a risk.

A few years ago, a lot of petting zoos and wildlife parks had to close for a long time, and could only reopen when they ensured they had hand sanitizers at each enclosure, and made the public aware that they should use them.

Surely, every stall with handling options at the pet show should have ensured that hygiene was a priority for both humans and animals.



I refrained from saying anything about BRAS until an official statement was released. I think it is high getting time that we beccame more vocal against these Anti Types. Its one thing to stand outside a show calling us cruel, or even to put up fake videos of cruelty throughout shows, put to threaten physical and mortal danger against anybody, no matter what the crime, is down right deplorable.

Hands up for starting the Reptile Keepers Protection Agency (ReKPA), standing up for the safety of reptile keepers, against the antis! :lol2:


In seriousness, I hope more is done to educate the show venues on how these shows will be conducted. Ensure them that the biggest priority is for the health and wellbeing of both visitors and animals alike, and that any risk of zoonoses or other problems will be minimal, if not neglible.
Just make it Reptile Protection AGENCY(RPA). Start a website, get on facebook and get stationary with RPA letterheads. Send positive memos to venues and work the AGENCY bit of the title with the same vigour as the APA do. Anything they can do we should do better.

Also noted Chris Newmans recommendations didn't tell clubs to ditch Local authority sites and make a bee line for established agricultural sites and County showgrounds. Sports centres and there like keep letting clubs down and there is no future in them for reptile shows. As they say to keep doing something and getting the same failing result is insanity.
 

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When and how will the refunds be issued ?
 

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A couple of thoughts on this...

Has anyone thought to contact the local newspapers? Journalists are always on the lookout for a good story, and one involving animal rights extremists sending death and bomb threats might just interest them, it would make a change from the usual "cat stuck up tree" headlines.

Also, if the APA are claiming responsibility for the cancellation of the show, and the show was cancelled as a direct result of the death threats, does that not mean in a round-about way that the APA are admitting to making those threats?

If there was no council involvement as the APA are claiming, then any competent journalist should be able to rule that out as the reason for the cancellation with a couple of calls to the council, and then having dismissed that make the link between the APA and the threats.
 

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Has anyone thought to contact the local newspapers? Journalists are always on the lookout for a good story, and one involving animal rights extremists sending death and bomb threats might just interest them, it would make a change from the usual "cat stuck up tree" headlines.

I agree with that, the whole thing is still pretty hush hush. I mean, I'm only just finding out about all of this now and a number of friends who are also very into their reps and been to more shows than I have are as shocked as I am. Though I reckon if we really want some publicity, it might be an idea to get hold of the guys from South Park :lol2:
 

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A couple of thoughts on this...

Has anyone thought to contact the local newspapers? Journalists are always on the lookout for a good story, and one involving animal rights extremists sending death and bomb threats might just interest them, it would make a change from the usual "cat stuck up tree" headlines.

Also, if the APA are claiming responsibility for the cancellation of the show, and the show was cancelled as a direct result of the death threats, does that not mean in a round-about way that the APA are admitting to making those threats?

If there was no council involvement as the APA are claiming, then any competent journalist should be able to rule that out as the reason for the cancellation with a couple of calls to the council, and then having dismissed that make the link between the APA and the threats.
The APA are also giving the council credit.
 

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Press Release May 2012

Reptile market is cancelled thanks to prompt action by Barking & Dagenham Council

The first planned reptile market this year – and one of only a handful of remaining markets of its kind in the UK - has been cancelled. The event, due to take place today (12 May 2012) at the Castle Green Sports Centre in Dagenham would have involved illegal wild animal dealing but thanks to a tip off from the Animal Protection Agency (APA), and the work of conscientious Council officials, the event will not now be taking place.

APA was advised by Barking & Dagenham Council Licensing Section that the event had been booked as an animal exhibition but APA informed the Council that a primary purpose of these events is to trade in animals. A recent independent scientific study into exotic pet markets found that these types of ‘shows’ were fundamentally commercial in nature and that the conditions and treatment for most animals was ‘tantamount to animal abuse’.
Trading in pet animals at markets stalls was banned in a 1983 amendment to the Pet Animals Act 1951. However, in an attempt to escape the attention of council inspectors, reptile market organisers often misdescribe their events as ‘shows’ or ‘breeders meetings’. Once Barking & Dagenham Council had reminded organisers, in no uncertain terms, that no animal trading whatsoever would be permitted and that enforcement action would be taken against offenders, the event was cancelled.
Said Elaine Toland, Director of the Animal Protection Agency:
“Barking & Dagenham Council is in concert with many other local authorities and is setting another positive example for all councils to follow. Hundreds, if not thousands, of animals have been spared the suffering they would have endured by being boxed up for prolonged periods in takeaway meal containers. Thanks to astute Council officials, the law protecting these animals has been upheld.”​
In their letter to the Council, APA also highlighted the public health risks associated with the close proximity of people to captive exotic animals and the post-event contamination of the venue.
 

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Press Release May 2012

Reptile market is cancelled thanks to prompt action by Barking & Dagenham Council

The first planned reptile market this year – and one of only a handful of remaining markets of its kind in the UK - has been cancelled. The event, due to take place today (12 May 2012) at the Castle Green Sports Centre in Dagenham would have involved illegal wild animal dealing but thanks to a tip off from the Animal Protection Agency (APA), and the work of conscientious Council officials, the event will not now be taking place.

APA was advised by Barking & Dagenham Council Licensing Section that the event had been booked as an animal exhibition but APA informed the Council that a primary purpose of these events is to trade in animals. A recent independent scientific study into exotic pet markets found that these types of ‘shows’ were fundamentally commercial in nature and that the conditions and treatment for most animals was ‘tantamount to animal abuse’.
Trading in pet animals at markets stalls was banned in a 1983 amendment to the Pet Animals Act 1951. However, in an attempt to escape the attention of council inspectors, reptile market organisers often misdescribe their events as ‘shows’ or ‘breeders meetings’. Once Barking & Dagenham Council had reminded organisers, in no uncertain terms, that no animal trading whatsoever would be permitted and that enforcement action would be taken against offenders, the event was cancelled.
Said Elaine Toland, Director of the Animal Protection Agency:
“Barking & Dagenham Council is in concert with many other local authorities and is setting another positive example for all councils to follow. Hundreds, if not thousands, of animals have been spared the suffering they would have endured by being boxed up for prolonged periods in takeaway meal containers. Thanks to astute Council officials, the law protecting these animals has been upheld.”​
In their letter to the Council, APA also highlighted the public health risks associated with the close proximity of people to captive exotic animals and the post-event contamination of the venue.
I've got so much to say about this but as I'm stuck in the pub with only my phone, It will have to wait!
This is really starting to frustrate me though, I don't attend many shows, bit the information they provide is so false Its unbelievable they can get away with it.
And elaine Holland needs to get a grip, was she deprived of pets as a child and now feels no one should have any? Quick, some one buy her a puppy!




Not that I advocate buying pets as gifts, thorough research must be done into any prospective pet to ensure the proper care requirements are met.
 
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The APA are also giving the council credit.
Exactly, so if the cancellation wasn't anything to do with the council that should be easy enough to verify with a phone call. Then if the show wasn't cancelled by the council who did cancel it and why? Answer, the organisers because they received death threats, presumably from the APA as it is they who are claiming responsibility for the cancellation.
 
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Exactly, so if the cancellation wasn't anything to do with the council that should be easy enough to verify with a phone call. Then if the show wasn't cancelled by the council who did cancel it and why? Answer, the organisers because they received death threats, presumably from the APA as it is they who are claiming responsibility for the cancellation.
I emailed the council 2 days ago, I have not had a reply yet.

APA will always say thanks to the council so they can tell the next council that the last one took action.
 

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APA will always say thanks to the council so they can tell the next council that the last one took action.

Yes, so if we can get something from the council denying any involvement in the cancellation, that can then be presented well in advance to other councils in who's boroughs shows are planned, so they know what to expect from the APA then they hopefully won't just take their claims at face value.
 
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I have to ask... Why is the FBH not Legally represented. surely if a solicitor were to draft up a letter to the venue well in advance of the event outlining the legalities of our beloved shows using actual points of law. Then surely a letter written in crayon by the APA would have little or no impact?

Also, if you wanna talk about Zoonotic disease.... check out what you can catch from cats and dogs.
 

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Perhaps a countrywide campaign is required to educate councils in advance of shows, so that when they receive fictitious claims from groups like the APA they will know how to respond?

Play the APA at their own game, get our defence in before they launch their attacks. At the moment they have us on the back foot, and we're left chatting about what went wrong after the event when it's too late!
 

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Perhaps a countrywide campaign is required to educate councils in advance of shows, so that when they receive fictitious claims from groups like the APA they will know how to respond?

Play the APA at their own game, get our defence in before they launch their attacks. At the moment they have us on the back foot, and we're left chatting about what went wrong after the event when it's too late!
thats 100% correct thing to do:2thumb:
 

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I have to ask... Why is the FBH not Legally represented. surely if a solicitor were to draft up a letter to the venue well in advance of the event outlining the legalities of our beloved shows using actual points of law. Then surely a letter written in crayon by the APA would have little or no impact?

Also, if you wanna talk about Zoonotic disease.... check out what you can catch from cats and dogs.

Do you donate to the FBH? Does any of the keyboard warriors on here become members of these societies? Unless people are prepared to put their money where their mouth is, then all we will be able to continue doing is having a rant on a forum occassionally. Legal representation costs money! Lets hope people like Chris Newman keep the health and strength of will, as well as the cahoona's to keep on battling these pillocks, because I don't actually see that many of us doing a lot more than rant, let alone put our hands in our pockets to support the hobby we love.

Just a thought....:whistling2:
 
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