Snake trade in the Russian Federation

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Biology and conservation . Herpetofauna of Russia includes 36 species of snakes. More than half of them (namely 19 species) are presented by edge populations at the species area borders. Only 7 species are largely distributed though the country. 17 species inhabit Asiatic part of Russian Federation. There are two areas of relatively high snake species richness: Ciscaucasia and South of the Far East. .

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Snake trade in the Russian Federation

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1. Snake trade in the Russian Federation Dr. Dmitry V. Semenov A.N. Severtsov Institute of Ecology and Evolution

2. Biology and conservation Herpetofauna of Russia includes 36 species of snakes. More than half of them (namely 19 species) are presented by edge populations at the species area borders. Only 7 species are largely distributed though the country. 17 species inhabit Asiatic part of Russian Federation. There are two areas of relatively high snake species richness: Ciscaucasia and South of the Far East.

3. Snakes number in different regions of Russia

6. Legal, management and enforcement Legal status of all snakes as well as other animals is regulated by the Federal Law N 52-FZ (of 24.04.1995) “About the wild animals”. Conservation of rare and endangered species is based on the Government decree (of 19.02.1996) “On the Red Book of Russian Federation”. There are a number of regional laws defining legal status of wild animals (including snakes) on the territories of each of 89 oblasts and republics of Russian Federation. So we have legal regulation of any possible human impact on snakes or on their habitats. The problem is in enforcement of the legislations. Federal Inspectorate of Nature Management implements control of these laws. But officers of this service use to control hunting or fishing and do not pay any attention on animal groups, which have lesser practical value.

9. Trade and market Demand for snakes in Russia is relatively low. It largest part is kipping as terrarium pet animals. The most popular terrarium snakes in Russia are now boas and pythons, rat snakes, milk snakes. One could buy a terrarium snakes through Internet, in pet-shops or on some markets. The larges center of snake trade is Moscow. There are more than 150 pet shops here and the famous animal market. The snakes for sale are imported or come from residential private breeders. One could easy buy a snake caught in the wild. There is no effective control on inside snake trade. Others forms of snake use are zoos, circuses, scientific researches. In most cases import and export of snakes for these purposes are legally documented.

10. Table 1. Legally registered cases of import and export of live snakes and derivate in Russia (2004-2009 years).

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