Full Title Name:  Virginia Administrative Code Title 4. Conservation and Natural Resources Vac Agency NO. 15. Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Chapter 30. Definitions and Miscellaneous: Importation, Possession, Sale, Etc., of Animals

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Country of Origin:  United States Citation:  4 VAC 15-30-5 to 60 Agency Origin:  Department of Game and Inland Fisheries Last Checked:  July, 2017
Summary: The following regulations implement Virginia's exotic pet laws.

4 VAC 15–30–5. Powers, authorities, and duties of the director in permitting.

4 VAC 15–30–7. Continuation of permitted activity.

4 VAC 15–30–10. Possession, importation, sale, etc., of wild animals.

4 VAC 15–30–20. Permit required to import, liberate or possess predatory or undesirable animals or birds.

4 VAC 15–30–30. Exclusions.

4 VAC 15–30–40. Importation requirements, possession and sale of nonnative (exotic) animals.

4 VAC 15–30–50. Possession, transportation, and release of wildlife by authorized persons.

4 VAC 15–30–60. Raptor propagation.

 

4 VAC 15-30-5. Powers, authorities, and duties of the director in permitting.

Pursuant to § 29.1-413 of the Code of Virginia and under authority granted to the board in subdivision 12 of § 29.1-103 of the Code of Virginia, the board hereby confers authority upon the director to set the permit schedule, establish permit conditions, delegate signature authority, establish protocols for responding to permit decision appeals, and render final permit decisions. The director shall also have authority to establish a policy on the issuance of new permits to individuals whose previous permits or applications have been revoked or denied for infractions of wildlife laws, regulations, or conditions.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-7. Continuation of permitted activity.

Provided that the issuance of a permit renewal by the department has been delayed past the expiration date of the permittee's previous permit at no fault of the applicant, the permittee may continue the specific activities authorized by the expired permit until the department has acted on such person's application for renewal. To qualify for this allowance, applicants must submit a completed renewal application to the department at least 30 days prior to the expiration date of their permit. The department may deny renewal of a permit to any applicant who fails to meet the issuance criteria set forth by the department.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-10. Possession, importation, sale, etc., of wild animals.

Under the authority of §§ 29.1-103 and 29.1-521 of the Code of Virginia it shall be unlawful to take, possess, conduct research, import, cause to be imported, export, cause to be exported, buy, sell, offer for sale, or liberate within the Commonwealth any wild animal unless otherwise specifically permitted by law or regulation. Unless otherwise stated, for the purposes of identifying species regulated by the board, when both the scientific and common names are listed, the scientific reference to genus and species will take precedence over common names.

Editors' Notes

ATTORNEY GENERAL OPINIONS

A two-year-old African lioness is a wild animal, unlawful to import into the Commonwealth, or to possess in the Commonwealth without a permit from the Board of Game and Inland Fisheries. 1987-88 Va. Op. Atty. Gen. 368, 1988 WL 408913, August 5, 1988.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-20. Permit required to import, liberate or possess predatory or undesirable animals or birds.

Under the authority of § 29.1-542 of the Code of Virginia, live wolves or coyotes, or birds or animals otherwise classed as predatory or undesirable, may not be imported into the Commonwealth or liberated therein, or possessed therein, except under a special permit of the board. Before such permit is issued, the importer shall make application to the department, giving the place of origin, the name and address of the exporter and a certificate from a licensed and accredited practicing veterinarian, or certified fish pathologist, certifying that the animal to be imported is not manifesting any signs of infectious, contagious, or communicable disease.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-30. Exclusions.

This chapter does not prohibit the possession, importation, and sale of native or naturalized albino amphibians, native or naturalized albino reptiles, or those domestic animals as defined in 4 VAC 15-20-50.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-40. Importation requirements, possession and sale of nonnative (exotic) animals.

A. Permit required. A special permit is required and may be issued by the department, if consistent with the department's fish and wildlife management program, to import, possess, or sell those nonnative (exotic) animals listed below and in 4 VAC 15-20-210 that the board finds and declares to be predatory or undesirable within the meaning and intent of § 29.1-542 of the Code of Virginia, in that their introduction into the Commonwealth will be detrimental to the native fish and wildlife resources of Virginia.

AMPHIBIANS
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Anura
Bufonidae
Rhinella marina
Cane toad*
 
Pipidae
Hymenochirus spp. Pseudohymenochiris merlini
African dwarf frog
  
Xenopus spp.
Tongueless or African clawed frog
Caudata
Ambystomatidae
All species
All mole salamanders
BIRDS
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Psittaciformes
Psittacidae
Myiopsitta monachus
Monk parakeet*
Anseriformes
Anatidae
Cygnus olor
Mute swan
FISH
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Cypriniformes
Catostomidae
Catostomus microps
Modoc sucker
  
Catostomus santaanae
Santa Ana sucker
  
Catostomus warnerensis
Warner sucker
  
Ictiobus bubalus
Smallmouth* buffalo
  
I. cyprinellus
Bigmouth* buffalo
  
I. niger
Black buffalo*
 
Characidae
Pygopristis spp.
Pygocentrus spp.
Rooseveltiella spp.
Serrasalmo spp.
Serrasalmus spp.
Taddyella spp.
Piranhas
 
Cobitidae
Misgurnus anguillicaudatus
Oriental weatherfish
 
Cyprinidae
Aristichyhys nobilis
Bighead carp*
  
Chrosomus saylori
Laurel dace
  
Ctenopharyngodon idella
Grass carp or white amur
  
Cyprinella caerulea
Blue shiner
  
Cyprinella Formosa
Beautiful shiner
  
Cyprinella lutrensis
Red shiner
  
Hypophthalmichthys molitrix
Silver carp*
  
Mylopharyngodom piceus
Black carp*
  
Notropis albizonatus
Palezone shiner
  
Notropis cahabae
Cahaba shiner
  
Notropis girardi
Arkansas River shiner
  
Notropis mekistocholas
Cape Fear shiner
  
Notropis simus pecosensis
Pecos bluntnose shiner
  
Notropis topeka (= tristis)
Topeka shiner
  
Phoxinus cumberlandensis
Blackside dace
  
Rhinichthys osculus lethoporus
Independence Valley speckled dace
  
Rhinichthys osculus nevadensis
Ash Meadows speckled dace
  
Rhinichthys osculus oligoporus
Clover Valley speckled dace
  
Rhinichthys osculus ssp.
Foskett speckled dace
  
Rhinichthys osculus thermalis
Kendall Warm Springs dace
  
Scardinius erythrophthalmus
Rudd
  
Tinca tinca
Tench*
Cyprinodontiformes
Poeciliidae
Gambusia gaigei
Big Bend gambusia
  
Gambusia georgei
San Marcos gambusia
  
Gambusia heterochir
Clear Creek gambusia
  
Gambusia nobilis
Pecos gambusia
  
Peociliopsis occidentalis
Gila topminnow
Gasterosteiformes
Gasterosteidae
Gasterosteus aculeatus williamsoni
Unarmored threespine stickleback
Gobiesociformes
Gobiidae
Proterorhinus marmoratus
Tubenose goby
  
Neogobius melanostomus
Round goby
Perciformes
Channidae
Channa spp.
Parachanna spp.
Snakeheads
 
Cichlidae
Tilapia spp.
Tilapia
  
Gymnocephalus cernuum
Ruffe*
 
Elassomatidae
Elassoma alabamae
Spring pygmy sunfish
 
Percidae
Crystallaria cincotta
Diamond darter
  
Etheostoma chermocki
Vermilion darter
  
Etheostoma boschungi
Slackwater darter
  
Etheostoma chienense
Relict darter
  
Etheostoma etowahae
Etowah darter
  
Etheostoma fonticola
Fountain darter
  
Etheostoma moorei
Yellowcheek darter
  
Etheostoma nianguae
Niangua darter
  
Etheostoma nuchale
Watercress darter
  
Etheostoma okaloosae
Okaloosa darter
  
Etheostoma phytophilum
Rush darter
  
Etheostoma rubrum
Bayou darter
  
Etheostoma scotti
Cherokee darter
  
Etheostoma sp.
Bluemask (= jewel) darter
  
Etheostoma susanae
Cumberland darter
  
Etheostoma wapiti
Boulder darter
  
Percina antesella
Amber darter
  
Percina aurolineata
Goldline darter
  
Percina jenkinsi
Conasauga logperch
  
Percina pantherina
Leopard darter
  
Percina tanasi
Snail darter
Scorpaeniformes
Cottidae
Cottus sp.
Grotto sculpin
  
Cottus paulus (= pygmaeus)
Pygmy sculpin
Siluriformes
Clariidae
All species
Air-breathing catfish
 
Ictaluridae
Noturus baileyi
Smoky madtom
  
Noturus crypticus
Chucky madtom
  
Noturus placidus
Neosho madtom
  
Noturus stanauli
Pygmy madtom
  
Noturus trautmani
Scioto madtom
Synbranchiformes
Synbranchidae
Monopterus albus
Swamp eel
MAMMALS
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Artiodactyla
Suidae
All Species
Pigs or Hogs*
 
Cervidae
All Species
Deer*
Carnivora
Canidae
All Species
Wild Dogs,* Wolves, Coyotes or Coyote hybrids, Jackals and Foxes
 
Ursidae
All Species
Bears*
 
Procyonidae
All Species
Raccoons and* Relatives
 
Mustelidae
All Species
Weasels, Badgers,* Skunks and Otters
  
(except Mustela putorius furo)
Ferret
 
Viverridae
All Species
Civets, Genets,* Lingsangs, Mongooses, and Fossas
 
Herpestidae
All Species
Mongooses*
 
Hyaenidae
All Species
Hyenas and Aardwolves*
 
Felidae
All Species
Cats*
Chiroptera
 
All Species
Bats*
Lagomorpha
Lepridae
Brachylagus idahoensis
Pygmy rabbit
  
Lepus europeaeous
European hare
  
Oryctolagus cuniculus
European rabbit
  
Sylvilagus bachmani riparius
Riparian brush rabbit
  
Sylvilagus palustris hefneri
Lower Keys marsh rabbit
Rodentia
 
All species native to Africa
All species native to Africa
 
Dipodidae
Zapus hudsonius preblei
Preble's meadow jumping mouse
 
Muridae
Microtus californicus scirpensis
Amargosa vole
  
Microtus mexicanus hualpaiensis
Hualapai Mexican vole
  
Microtus pennsylvanicus dukecampbelli
Florida salt marsh vole
  
Neotoma floridana smalli
Key Largo woodrat
  
Neotoma fuscipes riparia
Riparian (= San Joaquin Valley) woodrat
  
Oryzomys palustris natator
Rice rat
  
Peromyscus gossypinus allapaticola
Key Largo cotton mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus allophrys
Choctawhatchee beach mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus ammobates
Alabama beach mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus niveiventris
Southeastern beach mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus peninsularis
St. Andrew beach mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus phasma
Anastasia Island beach mouse
  
Peromyscus polionotus trissyllepsis
Perdido Key beach mouse
  
Reithrodontomys raviventris
Salt marsh harvest mouse
 
Heteromyidae
Dipodomys heermanni morroensis
Morro Bay kangaroo rat
  
Dipodomys ingens
Giant kangaroo rat
  
Dipodomys merriami parvus
San Bernadino Merriam's kangaroo rat
  
Dipodomys nitratoides exilis
Fresno kangaroo rat
  
Dipodomys nitratoides nitratoides
Tipton kangaroo rat
  
Dipodomys stephensi (including D. cascus)
Stephens' kangaroo rat
  
Perognathus longimembris pacificus
Pacific pocket mouse
 
Sciuridae
Cynomys spp.
Prairie dogs
  
Spermophilus brunneus brunneus
Northern Idaho ground squirrel
  
Tamiasciurus hudsonicus grahamensis
Mount Graham red squirrel
Soricomorpha
Soricidae
Sorex ornatus relictus
Buena Vista Lake ornate shrew
MOLLUSKS
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Neotaenioglossa
Hydrobiidae
Potamopyrgus antipodarum
New Zealand mudsnail
Veneroida
Dreissenidae
Dreissena bugensis
Quagga mussel
  
Dreissena polymorpha
Zebra mussel
REPTILES
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Crocodilia
Alligatoridae
All species
Alligators, caimans*
 
Crocodylidae
All species
Crocodiles*
 
Gavialidae
All species
Gavials*
Squamata
Colubridae
Boiga irregularis
Brown tree snake*
CRUSTACEANS
Order
Family
Genus/Species
Common Name
Decapoda
Cambaridae
Cambarus aculabrum
Cave crayfish
  
Cambarus zophonastes
Cave crayfish
  
Orconectes rusticus
Rusty crayfish
  
Orconectes shoupi
Nashville crayfish
  
Pacifastacus fortis
Shasta crayfish
  
Procambarus sp.
Marbled crayfish
 
Parastacidae
Cherax spp.
Australian crayfish
 
Varunidea
Eriocheir sinensis
Chinese mitten crab

 B. Temporary possession permit for certain animals. Notwithstanding the permitting requirements of subsection A of this section, a person, company or corporation possessing any nonnative (exotic) animal, designated with an asterisk (*) in subsection A of this section, prior to July 1, 1992, must declare such possession in writing to the department by January 1, 1993. This written declaration shall serve as a permit for possession only, is not transferable, and must be renewed every five years. This written declaration must include species name, common name, number of individuals, date or dates acquired, sex (if possible), estimated age, height or length, and other characteristics such as bands and band numbers, tattoos, registration numbers, coloration, and specific markings. Possession transfer will require a new permit according to the requirements of this subsection.

C. Exception for certain monk parakeets. A permit is not required for monk parakeets (quakers) that have been captive bred and are closed-banded with a seamless band.

D. Exception for parts or products. A permit is not required for parts or products of those nonnative (exotic) animals listed in subsection A of this section that may be used for personal use, in the manufacture of products, or used in scientific research, provided that such parts or products be packaged outside the Commonwealth by any person, company, or corporation duly licensed by the state in which the parts originate. Such packages may be transported into the Commonwealth, consistent with other state laws and regulations, so long as the original package remains unbroken, unopened and intact until its point of destination is reached. Documentation concerning the type and cost of the animal parts ordered, the purpose and date of the order, point and date of shipping, and date of receiving shall be kept by the person, business or institution ordering such nonnative (exotic) animal parts. Such documentation shall be open to inspection by a representative of the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries.

E. Exception for prairie dogs. The effective date of listing of prairie dogs under subsection A of this section shall be January 1, 1998. Prairie dogs possessed in captivity in Virginia on December 31, 1997, may be maintained in captivity until the animals' deaths, but they may not be sold on or after January 1, 1998, without a permit.

F. Exception for snakehead fish. Anglers may legally harvest snakehead fish of the family Channidae, provided that they immediately kill such fish and that they notify the department, as soon as practicable, of such actions.

G. Exception for feral hogs. Anyone may legally trap feral hogs with written permission of the landowner, provided that any trapped hogs are not removed from the trap site alive and are killed immediately.

H. Exception for grass carp. Anglers may legally harvest grass carp of the family Cyprinidae from public waters of the Commonwealth, except from department-owned or department-controlled lakes, provided that anglers ensure that harvested grass carp are dead.

I. All other nonnative (exotic) animals. All other nonnative (exotic) animals not listed in subsection A of this section may be possessed, purchased, and sold; provided, that such animals shall be subject to all applicable local, state, and federal laws and regulations, including those that apply to threatened/endangered species, and further provided, that such animals shall not be liberated within the Commonwealth.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-50. Possession, transportation, and release of wildlife by authorized persons.

A. Department employees in the performance of their official duties; U.S. government agencies' employees whose responsibility includes fisheries and wildlife management; and county, city or town animal control officers in the performance of their official duties related to public health concerns or problem wildlife removal, and individuals operating under conditions of a commercial nuisance animal permit issued by the department pursuant to §§ 29.1-412 and 29.1-417 of the Code of Virginia will be deemed to be permitted pursuant to this section to capture, temporarily hold or possess, transport, release, and when necessary humanely euthanize wildlife, provided that the methods of and documentation for the capture, possession, transport, release and euthanasia shall be in accordance with board policy.

B. Local animal shelters operating under the authority of, or under contract with, any county, city, or town with animal control responsibilities shall be authorized to receive, temporarily confine, and humanely euthanize wildlife, except for state or federal threatened and endangered species; federally protected migratory bird species; black bear; white-tailed deer; and wild turkey, provided that the methods of and documentation for the possession, confinement, and euthanasia shall be in accordance with conditions defined by the agency director. Provided further that any person may legally transport wildlife, except for those species listed above, to an authorized animal shelter after contacting the facility to confirm the animal will be accepted.

C. Employees or agents of other state wildlife agencies while in the performance of their official duty in transporting wildlife through the Commonwealth will be deemed to be permitted pursuant to this section, provided that a list of animals to be transported, a schedule of dates and locations where those animals will be housed while in the Commonwealth, and a letter of authorization from both the forwarding and receiving state agencies are provided to the department 24 hours prior to the transporting of such animals, and further provided that such animals shall not be liberated within the Commonwealth.

D. Employees or agents of government agencies, while in the performance of their official duties, may temporarily possess, transport, and dispose of carcasses of wild animals killed by vehicles, except for state or federal threatened and endangered species, and federally protected migratory bird species.

E. With prior written approval from the director or his designee and under conditions of an applicable department permit, institutions with bona fide accreditation from the Association of Zoos and Aquariums may possess, transport, have transported, export, or import native and naturalized species defined in the List of Native and Naturalized Fauna of Virginia, which is incorporated by reference into 4 VAC 15-20-50.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

4 VAC 15-30-60. Raptor propagation.

An applicant for a permit to propagate raptors pursuant to §§ 29.1-412, 29.1-521, and 29.1-542 of the Code of Virginia who possesses a valid Federal Raptor Propagation Permit shall submit to the department a completed State Propagation Permit application form and shall conduct their activities in accordance with permit conditions established under the authority of the director as granted in 4 VAC 15-30-5.

Official Virginia Administrative Code, current through 33:20 VA.R May 29, 2017, and fast-track regulations current through 33:19 VA.R May 15, 2017.

 

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