Worms & Germs Blog

Tag Archives: smuggling

Horse smuggling

Posted in Horses
I’ve written before about infectious disease concerns associated with animal smuggling. It’s usually focused on the large-scale smuggling of reptiles, birds and other small critters, but it can happen in larger animals as well. Some parts of the US/Mexico border appear to be rather popular smuggling routes for cattle and horses.  US Border Patrol agents recently… Continue Reading

More snake smuggling

Posted in Reptiles
I avoided the "snakes on a plane" title, as ever since the (bad) Samuel L. Jackson movie came out, every reptile smuggling headline seems to use use it. Regardless, would you like to be on a long trans-Atlantic flight with 247 smuggled animals, including a collection of venomous vipers? Probably not. Fortunately for passengers on… Continue Reading

Rabies in illegally imported dog: France

Posted in Dogs
A recent case of canine rabies in France showed yet again the risks posed by illegal importation of animals. This case is somewhat unusual since it seems to involve ignorance of the rules and lax enforcement, compared to rampant animal smuggling, but the end result was the same. The animal in question was a puppy… Continue Reading

Beware of the “Rango” effect

Posted in Reptiles
When a particular animal species or breed gets a lot of attention, such as through a popular movie or TV show, there’s sometimes a major increase in people wanting one as a pet. The proliferation of Dalmatians after 101 Dalmatians, and people buying Jack Russell terriers in response to Eddie from Frasier are only two… Continue Reading

Tiger smuggler thwarted

Posted in Other animals
Security screeners at a Thai airport discovered an attempted tiger smuggling, presumably by realizing stuffed animals don’t have a skeleton. A 31-year-old Thai national was trying to smuggle a sedated tiger cub in a carry-on bag. As it went through the X-ray machine, screeners noticed an item resembling a real cat. Closer inspection identified the… Continue Reading

More animal smuggling

Posted in Other animals
Mexican officials searching a man at the airport with a bulge under his shirt identified 18 monkeys hidden beneath his clothes. Apparently, investigators became suspicious when the guy became very nervous when questioned. (I would have thought the stench associated with having 18 monkeys plastered to your body would be another tip-off.) He was detained for… Continue Reading

Internet exotic pet dealer horrors

Posted in Other animals
.A public health expert has recommended that an exotic animal dealer’s facility be demolished or "completely gutted and sterilized" because it is so contaminated with animal feces and vomit, as well as roach infested and swarming with uncaged animals. No evidence of infection control was present in the facility that "reeked of death and decay… Continue Reading

Lizards on a plane (or greedy idiot on a plane)

Posted in Reptiles
Michael Plank, a California resident, was caught at the Los Angeles airport smuggling 15 lizards from Australia. Two geckos, two monitors and 11 skinks were found worth over $8500 and confiscated. The reptiles were strapped to his body inside money belts.  It’s not explained how the smuggling was identified, but I imagine wriggling clothes might… Continue Reading