100 animals, including exotic, endangered species, seized from Long Island home

0
39

This was an Animal House — literally.
A Long Island man was slapped with thousands of dollars in fines after authorities discovered 100 animals, including a South African ostrich and other exotic and endangered species, inside his home, officials said.
Multiple law enforcement agencies, including the feds, descended on the North Bellmore residence Tuesday night where they found the animals in the basement and backyard.
4 Authorities discovered 100 animals, including a South African ostrich and other exotic and endangered species, inside the man’s home. Humane Long Island
Among the discoveries were a lesser rhea, which is a South African ostrich, two peafowls and scores of chickens domestic ducks and geese, Humane Long Island said.
Authorities also seized an endangered tiger salamander, a giant African snail and a North American opossum, as well as a pair of prairie dogs, an Asian water monitor, a Savannah monitor, a Sulcata tortoise and multiple degus, the organization said.
Dozens of quails that were allegedly going to be fed to reptiles in the home were also rescued.
4 Law enforcement agencies and the feds discovered the animals in the basement and backyard. NBC New York
Multiple violations with fines totaling in the thousands of dollars were leveled against 32-year-old Matthew Spohrer, NBC 4 New York reported.
Spohrer allegedly claimed he bought the ostrich on eBay as an egg while he was drunk, Humane Long Island executive director John Di Leonardo told the station.
The investigation kicked off when an unlicensed exhibitor showed some of the animals off at the Bellmore Street Festival in October, leading to tips to Humane Long Island, the organization said.
4 Multiple violations with fines totaling in the thousands of dollars were leveled against 32-year-old Matthew Spohrer. NBC New York
“The illicit wildlife trade is one of the largest sources of criminal earnings, behind only arms smuggling and drug trafficking. But the animals pay the price,” Di Leonardo, who is an anthrozoologist said in a statement.
“Hoarding giant birds, prairie dogs, and endangered species in a cramped basement or backyard shed is cruel, and keeping them in cages next to their natural predators can cause them extreme stress. Simply speaking, wild animals are not pets.”
“It was disturbing,” director of law enforcement for the Nassau County SPCA Matt Roper told Newsday. “The animals were all well cared for. There was no neglect, but he was in possession of animals on the endangered species list and he was in possession of animals that are dangerous to the public.”
4 The investigation into the unlicensed exhibitor showed some of the animals off at the Bellmore Street Festival in October, leading to tips to Humane Long Island. Humane Long Island
Newsday approached the targeted home on Thursday, but a man declined comment through an intercom doorbell.
The rhea will eventually make its way down to bird rescue in North Carolina while other birds will be fostered by Humane Long Island.

webintern@dakdan.com

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here