A dozen reptiles were seized from the man’s house in 2019 by Conservation Regulator Authorised Officers, including Blue Tongue Lizards, a Black Headed Python, an Eastern Bearded Dragon, and four subspecies of carpet pythons.
The man claimed the reptiles were like his children, but he failed to obtain a wildlife license to legally keep them, despite previously holding a license until 2005.
He also admitted to taking several of the Blue Tongue Lizards from the wild, including one that had been hit by a car.
The man was charged and convicted for nine breaches of the Wildlife Act, including possession and take of wildlife.
He was fined $8000 with $128 of additional costs. Four of the Blue Tongue Lizards were returned to the man as they don’t require a wildlife license if obtained legally.
The remaining seized reptiles were rehomed.
The maximum penalty for possessing protected wildlife in Victoria is $8,261, while illegally hunting, taking or destroying protected wildlife carries a fine of up to $8,261 and/or six months imprisonment.
Quotes attributable to Regulatory Program Manager Hume Andrew Dean
It’s important for people to hold a valid wildlife licence to protect and conserve our native species. The Conservation Regulator monitors wildlife permit holders to make sure they’re abiding by licence conditions.
Removing wildlife from the wild can have a serious impact on both animal welfare and wildlife populations. Injured wildlife require expert care, treatment and rehabilitation from wildlife carers.
Reviewed 25 June 2021