Hagebau withdraws from reptile sales after talks with PETA Germany
In 2015 and 2016, we at PETA Germany published extensive research into the sale of small animals and reptiles, which revealed serious deficiencies and terrible animal cruelty in numerous pet shops and their suppliers.
Since it was published, we have been in dialogue with a number of pet shops and hardware stores in order to promote the withdrawal from animal sales. Based on the talks, the company Hagebau announced in November 2020 that it would end the sale of reptiles from 2021.
With our publications about the suffering of animals for the reptile trade, we were able to persuade the hardware store chain Hagebau to stop selling reptiles. In the past, we have pointed out several times that this is associated with immense animal suffering. The public criticism had already led to the fact that the majority of the Hagebau stores stopped selling reptiles in recent years.
In 2021, the last sales point for reptiles from Hagebau is to be closed.
We thank you for this animal-friendly decision and expressly welcome the trend-setting step taken by the Hagebau company for more animal welfare.
“Snakes, turtles, and exotic lizards can never be kept in a species-appropriate manner in living rooms. Hagebau has recognized this and is taking an important step in the direction of animal welfare by withdrawing from reptile scales,” said Jana Hoger, PETA Germany
The Borneo earless monitor lizard is traded for 8,000 euros per pair. Olexandr Topchylo / wikimedia.org
With the sales stop from 2021, Hagebau is taking responsibility and making an important contribution to ensuring that no more reptiles are sold in Germany in the future.
Reptile sales: animal suffering supported by hardware stores and pet shops
Our publication in August 2016 provided insights into the unscrupulous trade in reptiles for the German pet market for the first time. Image material documented masses of the dead, injured, or for years locked up in plastic boxes animals at German wholesalers and their international suppliers.
A study presented by the Federal Environment Ministry in March 2020 also confirms that the trade-in of exotic wild animals is contributing to the global extinction of species.
For reasons of species and nature conservation, action must be taken accordingly. When reptiles are caught and transported alone, up to 70 percent of the animals die from stress, insufficient supplies, or injuries caused by transport.
Many of the exotic animals sold in Germany also come from Asia, Africa, and South America as so-called wild-caught animals – they were previously wrested from their natural habitat.
Due to the unknown origin of the animals, it cannot be said in such cases whether or which deadly viruses and bacteria the reptiles carry.
The majority of all zoonoses, 72 percent, can be traced back to contact with wild animals.
China has banned the consumption of wildlife and has largely restricted markets due to coronavirus.
But in this country too, immediate action is required. Together with eleven other German animal and species protection organizations, we, therefore, wrote to various federal ministries and party leaders in March 2020, demanding a comprehensive import ban on exotic wild animals.
Trade-in “pets”: Animals are not a commodity
In the past, we have campaigned for an end to the sale of small animals and reptiles with various campaigns and demonstrations.
As a result, some companies stopped trading animals – the OBI company most recently announced that it would withdraw from animal sales at the end of 2019. eBay Classifieds also announced in autumn 2020 that it would be introducing stricter guidelines on its advertising portal for more animal welfare.
We call on other companies to follow the exemplary decisions of the hardware store chains Hagebau and OBI as well as eBay Classifieds and also to stop selling reptiles and small animals so that the commercial abuse of animals as goods is ended forever.
And I mean…Deaf lizards in fruit boxes, snakes in video cassette cases, parrot eggs in special bra – the hiding places with which animal smugglers bring their “goods” to their destination are becoming increasingly professional.
Because animal smuggling is a gigantic business and the structures are mafia-like.
The illegal trade in wild animals enriches unscrupulous profiteers annually by around five billion dollars. In addition to drug trafficking, arms, and people smuggling, the trade-in protected animals is the most profitable form of cross-border crime today.
In addition to the USA, Asia is another major supplier of reptiles for the German market.
Around 850,000 reptiles are officially imported into Germany every year. The number of unreported cases is likely to be a lot higher, as the illegal trade in exotic animals is also flourishing.
Particularly valuable are currently Borneo deaf lizards for 8000 euros per pair, New Zealand forest geckos for 5300 euros per pair, and fringed tree crawls from Guatemala for 2800 euros per pair.
There are also countless exotic mammals and millions of so-called ornamental fish.
In the reptile trade, an individual animal is not of great value; the mass is much more important. The mass import makes it possible for the traders to sell the animals they have bought at just as low prices.
Many of the sensitive reptiles die on the long transport routes or on the breeding farms. But Death rates of up to 70% are already factored in by retailers.
From 2004 to 2014, six million exotic animals were shipped to Germany. Trade is booming, on the Internet, at animal fairs, and at animal and feed markets. The wild catch of reptiles will also continue to be supported through purchases, demand determines supply, as is the case in the reptile trade.
Online trading increases the threat to species that are already endangered and enables criminal traders to “go about their bloody business inconspicuously and anonymously”.
For the unscrupulous business with the sensitive exotic animals, the animals are forcibly torn from their natural habitat or “produced” en masse by ruthless breeders. The purchase of such an animal is always related to the death of many other painfully perished reptiles.
Reptiles are not part of the living room – even the dumbest buyer must finally understand that.
My best regards to all, Venus