Massachusetts

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MA - Domestic Violence - § 11. Possession, care and control of domesticated animal owned by persons involved in certain protecti


This Massachusetts law, effective October of 2012, allows the court to order the possession, care and control of any domesticated animal owned, possessed, leased, kept or held by either party or a minor child residing in the household to the plaintiff or petitioner in a no contact or restraining order. The court may order the defendant to refrain from abusing, threatening, taking, interfering with, transferring, encumbering, concealing, harming or otherwise disposing of such animal.

MA - Endangered Species - Chapter 131A. Massachusetts Endangered Species Act


This Massachusetts statute comprises the state's endangered species act.  "Endangered species", any species of plant or animal in danger of extinction throughout all or a significant portion of its range including those species listed under the federal ESA.  The director shall conduct investigations and consult with the natural heritage and endangered species advisory committee in order to determine whether any species of plant or animal constitutes an endangered or threatened species or species of special concern.  Habitat alteration permits are required under this act when any person undertakes a project that may alter a significant portion of habitat.

MA - Equine Activity Liability Statute - Chapter 128. Agriculture.


This Massachusetts law provides that an equine activity sponsor, an equine professional, or any other person shall not be liable for an injury to or the death of a participant resulting from the inherent risks of equine activities.  The statute sets out several definitions related to equine activities, but specifically notes that the term "engage in an equine activity" shall not include being a spectator at an equine activity, except in cases where the spectator places himself in an unauthorized area or in immediate proximity to the equine activity. 

Liability is not limited by this statute where the equine professional knowingly provided faulty tack or equipment, failed to make reasonable and prudent efforts to determine the ability of the participant to engage safely in the equine activity, owns or otherwise is in lawful possession of the land or facilities upon which the participant sustained injuries because of a known, dangerous latent condition, or if he or she commits an act or omission that constitutes willful or wanton disregard for the safety of the participant or intentionally injures the participant. 

MA - Equine transport - License plates for vehicles transporting equine animals


This Massachusetts law provides that vehicles transporting equines must have a special license plate. Also, the use of multiple deck vehicles or the so-called "possum belly" vehicle used in the transportation of equine animals is prohibited.

MA - Exotic pet, breeding - Chapter 131. Inland Fisheries and Game and Other Natural Resources.


Massachusetts bans private possession of exotic pets, and requires licenses for those who deal and propagate wild species for other reasons. The Massachusetts director of the Division of Fisheries and Wildlife also issues a list of exempted species for which no permit is needed. (See also

MA - Exotic pets - 9.01: Exemption List


This section exempts some animals from Massachusetts' exotic pet ban. The animals that have been added to this license-exemption list include boas and pythons, skinks, parrots, hedgehogs, chinchillas, and flying squirrels, among others.

MA - Exotic Pets - Chapter 131. Inland Fisheries and Game and Other Natural Resources. Massachusetts bans hybrid animals, those offspring of mating between a domestic animal and its wild counterpart, usually wolves and dogs. No individual may possess or own a hybrid as a pet.
MA - Fur - Chapter 131. Inland Fisheries and Game and Other Natural Resources.


Massachusetts law provides that a person may not use or possess any trap for capturing furbearing mammals except for common mouse and rat traps, nets, and box or cage traps. Traps designed to capture and hold a furbearing mammal by gripping the mammal's body, or body part are prohibited, including steel jaw leghold traps, padded leghold traps, and snares. This prohibition does not apply to federal, state, or municipal departments for the protection from threats to human health and safety (e.g., beaver or muskrat caused flooding or damage).

MA - Hunting - Chapter 131. Inland Fisheries and Game and Other Natural Resources.


This law reflects Massachusetts' hunter harassment provision. Under the law, no person shall obstruct, interfere with or otherwise prevent the lawful taking of fish or wildlife by another at the locale where such activity is taking place. Acts prohibited include, but are not limited to, driving or disturbing wildlife, harassing another engaged in lawful taking of fish or wildlife, interjecting oneself into the line of fire, or erecting barriers to prevent access. A person may seek an injunction to prevent violation of this section and a person who sustains damages from any act in violation of the law may bring a civil action for punitive damages.

MA - Hunting, Internet - § 65A. Online Shooting or Spearing

This statute prohibits hunting via the Internet and the operation of online hunting businesses within the state of Massachusetts. Violation is punished by imprisonment in the house of correction for not more than 2 1/2 years or by a fine of not more than $2,500, or by both a fine and imprisonment.

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