The popular zoo in Kristiansand known as Dyreparken has offered refuge to 44 of nearly 200 reptiles seized last week by police and animal protection authorities from a man who was breeding them illegally.
News bureau NTB reported Monday that 13 of the snakes and 31 of the lizards seized in a raid on the man’s residence in Oslo have been moved to the zoo in Kristiansand. A zoo veterinarian told local newspaper Fædrelandsvennen that the animals he could save were in relatively good shape and will have a new home after they’ve been placed in quarantine for a month and cleared health requirements.
Many of the other reptiles that the man is charged with breeding and selling internationally were in poor condition, however, after having lived in crowded conditions and without enough food and water. The man in his 30s is charged not just with the illegal aspects of his breeding and sales business but with cruelty to animals as well.
The reptiles that won’t get a new chance at the zoo were turned over to animal protection authorities at Mattilsynet and were likely to be put to death. “It’s always sad when we have to destroy animals, but in such situations we unfortunately have no choice,” Kjetil Berg, district chief for Mattilsynet in Oslo, said. “Private possession of reptiles is illegal in Norway, so we can’t place them and we have no means of keeping them.” Others apparently needed to be put of their misery.