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The main objective of this group is to campaign for a ban on the importation of tortoises bound for the UK pet trade. It is clear that the 1984 1999 bans to prohibit the capture and distribution of tortoises being taken from the wild are failing miserably. Since Slovenia joined the EU in 2004, tortoise trade has escalated out of control and tortoises of dubious origin, many of which are DEFRA certified, are being imported to the UK to satisfy the pet trade and at the same time, line the pockets of uncaring, greedy dealers who have no thought for the welfare of their "stock". The tortoises are sold on, often with inappropriate set-ups and with the wrong, little, or no information at all for their ongoing care. We, as a group need to highlight these problems, increase awareness and campaign to stop the importation of tortoises for the pet trade once and for all.Together we can make a difference
An estimated 10 million tortoises were shipped into the UK for the pet trade between 1890 and 1984 before the initial ban was introduced. This trade is back! … and tortoises are being imported in substantial numbers. However, DEFRA are failing to prevent this illegal trade and are in fact licensing it. These tortoises go through untold misery and often arrive here with chronic worm infestations and dehydrated, which far too often contributes to their early demise.
We would like to thank everyone who has taken time to sign our online petition and we do hope to be in a position to present both the online and the paper petitions in the near future. We currently have over 15000 signatures in total but we would appreciate more. If members would kindly consider either signing our online petition, which fortunately we have been able to continue, by clicking here or continuing to collect signatures from work colleagues, friends etc on our paper petition, which can be downloaded here, we should be grateful:-In the meantime we are waiting to hear back from an MP who is working on our behalf with regards to obtaining answers from Animal Health/DEFRA regarding important issues on importation raised by us.