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Stiffer legislation proposed to combat invasive species

Following on a commitment to crack down on invasive species, 
such as zebra and quagga mussels, the B.C. government has released a series of 
policy intentions for public comment. 

A paper summarizing the B.C. government's policy intention to amend the 
Controlled Alien Species Regulation has been released, and the public are 
invited to share their feedback until Oct. 24.
The proposed amendments will help prevent the introduction of aquatic invasive species that 
present a significant risk to B.C.'s fish and wildlife resources. Main 
measures include: 
* Significantly reducing the possibility of high-risk aquatic species - 
including the snakehead fish - from becoming established in local waters, by 
prohibiting the possession, breeding, release or transportation of these 
species. 
* Combating the introduction of dangerous organisms such as the zebra and 
quagga mussels that 'hitchhike' on boats, by requiring that no invasive 
mussel, alive or dead, be present on boats or related equipment. 

Other changes being recommended include: 
* Adding definitions for "accredited zoo or aquarium," "certified 
education institution" and "certified research institution" to create 
clarity on standards, and allow exemptions to apply for strict educational 
or scientific purposes. 
* Clarifying which species of monitor lizard are prohibited; typically 
those that grow over two metres in length or that otherwise create a 
significant threat to public safety. 

 

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