Well, since my last post I've been looking into different kinds of exotic animals that I wondered were available. I mentioned at the end of my last post that I wondered if dormice are still available. Well, apparently there's been a ban on selling these adorable little furballs! Seems it all started in 2003 when a shipment of them from Africa came infested with monkeypox. I spent yesterday reading this whole article by the CDC all the way through. Seems it was a shipment of all kinds of African rodents, not just dormice. There were also striped (zebra) mice, brush-tailed porcupines, Gambian pouched rats, and rope squirrels, as well as the American prairie dogs. So now the export of African rodents has been banned, and the ban hasn't yet been lifted. You cannot even get captive-bred African rodents anywhere!! They won't let them be shipped out of their home states! I think that's silly!
I had a dormouse back in 1995, I also had zebra mice. I enjoyed them! They were so unique looking! I think keeping the ban going this long is silly! It should have been lifted by now. That was all based on just one shipment that occured so long ago now and all those animals had been destroyed! And anyway, look at how many people have caught salmonella from handling reptiles. How come the keeping/breeding/exporting of reptiles hasn't been banned? Monkeypox is no more serious a disease than salmonella. And according to the CDC, people who've had smallpox vaccinations are less likely to get monkeypox. I've had the vaccine for smallpox. So when I've had the small rodents I never caught anything. The CDC however, does not want to take any chances! So they put a ban on even sending out captive-bred animals. Just seems silly to me! The only people who are really at risk are children, the elderly, and anyone else with compromised immune systems. But I miss having dormice! I think they're so cute! Almost worth the risk.
Well, with that ban in place now I've turned my attention to specific herps. I've been reading up and doing all kinds of research. I've even ordered books that the experienced herpetologists have suggested about my selected species. Nothing beats hands-on training though. Well, we'll see what happens. I've already found out some things I didn't know before. So I am hoping with all this studying I've been doing that I'll do good. If there is one thing I've noticed from the time I bred chihuahuas, it's that everyone has their own experiences about what is successful and what isn't. A lot of people succeed by way of trial and error. I prefer not to do it that way. That's why I'm studying BEFORE buying any species of anything. It'd help too if I had a mentor. Someone who has been in the field a lot longer than I have. Gee, I sure do hope herp breeders are more willing to help than chihuahua breeders I've met in the past have been!! If not, then like the chihuahuas, I may have to go it alone again, and I'd really prefer not to do that. But if I have to I will. I had to learn how to breed dogs the right way through books. My favorite was Dog Breeding For Dummies. LOL! Hey! It was a GOOD book!!! I couldn't put it down to do nothing! Of course I liked The Joy of Breeding Your Own Show Dog, but it seemed to be more of a book that talked to more experienced breeders. But I read the book from cover to cover! Believe it or not! I still have the book in hopes that maybe someday I might begin dog breeding again. I don't have the updated version just yet though, I am thinking of getting it. I don't know when I will begin dog breeding again, no time in the forseeable future I can tell you that! I was really upset by losing Groucho. Though I can tell you one thing about getting Minnie, she's helped me get over losing Groucho! I'm so busy hand-taming her, I don't have time to think about mourning Groucho anymore! Another thing is I still am prejudiced against show breeders! I'm kinda stuck between rocks and a hard place on that one. I hate show breeders, but I also realize their importance. Just like I hate spiders, but I also understand how important they are because they kill mosquitos, and I hate mosquitos even more!!!! But I can say I've had equally bad experiences with both spiders AND show breeders!! Both of which still gives me nightmares! :P
Well anyway, that's my plans for the future. But I don't intend on starting until Anna is gone to Bozeman. She wasn't too thrilled to find out I'm going to be using her room as a breeding room for the herps! I need to get some plastic and cover her windows to keep drafts from coming in. I've got lots to do before I get my first specimen. But already I know what species I want. Which one to begin with is the tough question! I don't want to start all at once.