21 April 2009

New rules?

HR669 hasn’t exactly been making national headlines, but in certain circles, has been the topic of much discussion. Sponsored by Guam delegate Madeleine Bordallo (pictured), it’s going to be the subject of an American congressional subcommittee hearing this week (23 April 2009).

The summary of the bill indicates that much is expected in determining whether a species would be allowed in the country or not, including the identity of the organism to the species level and the native range of the species.

Of course, Marmorkrebs would pose a potentially interesting enforcement conundrum. It has no formal species description. It has no known native range – but its closets relative appear to be southern U.S. species. Are Marmorkrebs nonnative?

GrrlScientist has several posts about this new bill (first, second, third).

There are literally tens of thousands of species of non-native birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians, fish and invertebrates that are kept and bred in the United States (for example, there are more than 2,500 species of non-native freshwater and marine fish species in the aquarium trade alone).

In particular, she is asking researchers for information about whether this would impact their research.

Mike Dunford chimes in here and has a follow-up here.

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