Call to stop pet smuggling

The head of an animal sanctuary has advised Barbadians against smuggling exotic species of animals and birds into the island and warned they pose a danger to farmers and the ecosystem.

Ryan Inniss opened the visitor attraction Marizayra’s Sanctuary at his Harrismith, St Philip residence almost five years ago, to provide a home for animals which he said owners had been “letting go” after bringing them in as pets but later finding themselves unable to maintain them.

During a tour of the sanctuary by Minister of Tourism Senator Lisa Cummins and other tourism officials yesterday, Inniss said: “A lot of people smuggle things into the island. They realise they did not do their research on the animals and then they realise these animals either get too big, get too aggressive and they then can’t be handled. Some negative persons then would release these animals into the environment, causing a huge problem in Barbados.”

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