57ºF

Exotic pet amnesty scheduled Saturday at Wickham Park

Florida wildlife officials will give pets new homes

Along with "Merlin" the Africa pygmy hedgehog, state wildlife personnel host a "Meet and Greet" with three animal ambassadors gathered for the media to bring attention to April 5th Exotic Amnesty Day. Gathered at the Wickham Park Pavilion, where the event will be held Saturday. These three are pets that were turned in on previous amnesty days, and now pose for the media. "Volcano", a ball Python from Africa, "Merlin" an African pygmy hedgehog, "Porky" a Red-footed Tortoise from South America.
Along with "Merlin" the Africa pygmy hedgehog, state wildlife personnel host a "Meet and Greet" with three animal ambassadors gathered for the media to bring attention to April 5th Exotic Amnesty Day. Gathered at the Wickham Park Pavilion, where the event will be held Saturday. These three are pets that were turned in on previous amnesty days, and now pose for the media. "Volcano", a ball Python from Africa, "Merlin" an African pygmy hedgehog, "Porky" a Red-footed Tortoise from South America. (Florida Today)

MELBOURNE, Fla. – Do you have a python, iguana or monkey that you want to get rid of?

Local 6 News partner Florida Today says, Florida wildlife officials along the Space Coast are willing to take them off your hands on Saturday, no questions asked, as part of Exotic Pet Amnesty Day on Saturday in Melbourne.

The goal of the event is to get the animals into the hands of people who might be better able to care for the non-native animals.

Exotic Pet Amnesty Day for Brevard County will be held from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at the Wickham Park Pavilion, according to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission website.

Accepted animals include reptiles, amphibians, mammals, birds, fish and invertebrates, but not cats or dogs.

Owners of exotic pets often release them into the wild if they can't take care of them, and officials with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conversation Commission want to put a stop to that.

Pet pythons that have been dumped in South Florida are blamed for changing the ecosystem of the Everglades.