Chapter 1501:31-25 Wild Animal Collecting

1501:31-25-01 Wild animal permit regulations.

(A) The following regulations are hereby established by authority of sections 1531.08 , 1533.08 and 1533.09 of the Revised Code.

(B) The chief of the division of wildlife is hereby authorized to establish a scientific collecting permit and an education permit. The chief shall establish criteria and guidelines for qualification for such permits. Persons not providing adequate qualifications will be denied a permit.

(C) Persons desiring to engage in bird banding activities shall receive banding permit from the division of wildlife. Banding permits allow banding and release activities only. All birds killed or injured during banding activities, shall be provided to the division of wildlife or transferred to an approved wild animal permit holder. All banding permit holders must have or work under the authority of a valid banding or marking permit issued by the U.S. fish and wildlife service.

(D) All persons requesting a scientific collecting, education or banding permit shall at the time of application for such permit provide the information requested on forms provided by the division of wildlife for each separate project. Permit holders may add projects during the duration of the permit but only after submitting projects and receiving approval from the wildlife chief.

(E) Persons failing to provide full information required on the application form to the satisfaction of the wildlife chief will be denied a permit. In addition, a copy of all published reports or publications derived from the data collected shall be provided to the division of wildlife.

(F) Wild animal permits expire at midnight on March fifteenth of each year.

(G) Persons who assist a permit holder are authorized to collect and/or possess wild animals for the permit holder.

(1) Persons who assist a permit holder are authorized to collect and/or possess wild animals only under the conditions of the permit, in compliance with wildlife laws.

(2) The permit holder is responsible for ensuring that wild animals are collected or possessed by his assistants only in compliance with the permit.

(H) The chief of the division of wildlife is hereby authorized to issue free letter permits to qualified persons for the taking, possession or transportation of wild animals, including aquatic nuisance species and endangered species. Persons desiring a letter permit shall supply information as required by the chief. Failure to provide such information will result in denial of the permit.

(I) It shall be unlawful for any person receiving a permit established by this rule or section 1533.08 of the Revised Code to fail to submit a written report of collecting activities prior to March fifteen each year. The report shall list the following information for each specimen collected:

(1) Scientific name and quantity collected.

(2) Date collected.

(3) Location (county and township) collected.

(4) Location, date and method each specimen was disposed of.

(J) It shall be unlawful for any person possessing a permit mentioned in this rule to take, possess, or transport any wild animal contrary to any condition set forth within the permit or established by the chief of the division of wildlife.

(K) It shall be unlawful to use or provide any contraceptive drugs, substances or chemicals to any free ranging wild animal. Provided further, persons may request permission from the chief of the division of wildlife to use contraceptives for scientific research. The chief may issue a conditional permit in writing after a person has submitted in writing the proposal which outlines the scientific research project.

(L) It shall be unlawful to disturb, molest, tamper with, damage, move or remove any labeled material, equipment or appurtenance associated with an authorized division of wildlife research, survey or inventory project activity unless authorized by the chief of the division of wildlife or their designee.

(M) It shall be unlawful to disturb, molest, remove or take any specimen associated with an authorized division of wildlife research, survey, inventory project or activity unless authorized by the chief of the division of wildlife or their designee.

(N) All definitions set forth in rule 1501:31-1-02 of the Administrative Code shall apply to this rule.

Effective: 01/01/2013
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 08/27/2012 and 11/01/2017
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 1531.06 , 1531.08 , 1533.08 , 1533.09
Rule Amplifies: 1531.06 , 1531.08 , 1533.08 , 1533.09
Prior Effective Dates: 5/1/76, 1/2/81, 6/1/85, 8/15/95, 9/24/02, 5/27/05, 7/1/08

1501:31-25-02 Further regulations applying to wild animal collectors. [Rescinded].

Rescinded eff 7-1-08

1501:31-25-03 Rehabilitators permit.

(A) It shall be lawful for a person with a rehabilitators permit to rehabilitate orphaned or injured wild animals for the purpose of releasing the wild animals back to the wild. It shall be unlawful to rehabilitate any wild animal without first obtaining a category I or category II rehabilitators permit.

(B) Rehabilitator permit applicants must be eighteen years of age or older.

(C) Rehabilitator permit holders shall provide proper facilities for all animals in their care. All persons applying for a rehabilitators permit shall meet the cage and holding requirements specified on the permit application form.

(D) Category I rehabilitators permit applicants shall have completed a division of wildlife approved rehabilitation course or a course established by the Ohio wildlife rehabilitators association and approved by the division of wildlife and provide documentation that they have a veterinarian's assistance when needed.

(E) Persons holding a category I rehabilitators permit may rehabilitate orphans, except deer, raccoons, weasels, skunks, mink, opossums, badgers, beaver, raptors, canids, bats, mute swans and state or federal endangered species.

(F) Persons that have at least three years of rehabilitation experience as a category I rehabilitator or equivalent may apply for a category II rehabilitators permit. A category II rehabilitators permit will allow the individual permit holder to rehabilitate all species of wild animals except deer, coyote, mute swans, or state or federal endangered species unless otherwise approved by the chief of the division of wildlife. Category II rehabilitators shall provide documentation that they have veterinarian assistance and the ability to properly care for wild animals that are diseased, injured, or need rehabilitative care.

(G) Persons holding a rehabilitators permit shall comply with all provisions and conditions set forth in the permit and any of the Ohio division of wildlife minimum standards for the care and welfare of animals.

(H) All rehabilitators permit holders shall keep a record of all animals by species which are held for rehabilitation. Records shall include where the animal was found, the date the wild animal was received, the reason the animal needed rehabilitation, the date and location where the wild animal was released, or its final disposition. Provided further all of the aforementioned records shall be held on file for a period of two years and shall be open for inspections by any division of wildlife personnel.

(I) Failure to comply with any provisions or conditions of the rehabilitators permit, this rule, or any other division of wildlife rule shall result in the revocation of the rehabilitators permit.

(J) Any wildlife officer may remove any wild animal which is being improperly cared for and provide written notice to the holder of a the rehabilitators permit that his or her permit is being revoked until such time as the conditions of the facility or the care and handling deficiencies are corrected.

(K) All definitions set forth in rule 1501:31-1-02 of the Administrative Code shall apply to this rule.

Effective: 07/01/2010
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 01/29/2010 and 06/30/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 1531.06 , 1531.08 , 1531.10 , 1533.08
Rule Amplifies: 1531.06 , 1531.08 , 1531.10
Prior Effective Dates: 10-30-95; 11-1-97, 9-24-02; 9-24-07

1501:31-25-04 Reptiles and Amphibians.

(A) Season Dates

(1) It shall be unlawful for any person to take bullfrogs or green frogs from May first through six p.m. on the second Friday of June each year.

(2) It shall be unlawful for any person to take snapping turtles or softshell turtles from May first through the last day of June each year.

(B) Bag and Size Limits

(1) It shall be unlawful for any person to take more than 15 bullfrogs or green frogs, singularly or in the aggregate, in any one day.

(2) It shall be unlawful for any person to possess more than 15 bullfrogs or green frogs, singularly or in the aggregate, at or between the place where taken and a residence or place of lodging.

(3) It shall be unlawful for any person to take snapping turtles or softshell turtles with a straight-line carapace length of less than 13 inches.

(4) It shall be unlawful for an Ohio resident to take or possess more than 4 total individuals of each species of collectable reptiles or collectable amphibians from the wild in Ohio.

(5) It shall be unlawful to take any reptile or amphibian not listed as a collectable reptile or collectable amphibian from the wild in Ohio except bullfrogs, green frogs, snapping turtles and softshell turtles.

(6) It shall be unlawful to take or possess any reptile or amphibian from any area under agreement with, owned, controlled or administered by the division of wildlife, except for:

(a) persons who have received written permission from the chief of the division of wildlife, provided they carry and exhibit said permission upon request.

(b) persons lawfully taking bullfrogs, green frogs, snapping turtles and softshell turtles.

(7) It shall be unlawful for a nonresident to take any collectable reptile or collectable amphibian from the wild in Ohio.

(C) Methods

(1) It shall be unlawful for any person to take reptiles or amphibians by shooting; except bullfrogs, green frogs, snapping turtles and softshell turtles may be taken with archery equipment.

(2) It shall be unlawful for any person to set, use or maintain a turtle trap having mesh measuring less than four inches on a side unless such traps are provided with an escape ring of at least six inches in diameter, leading out of the trap, held open at all times.

(3) It shall be unlawful for any person to take or attempt to take turtles by means of a trap, placed in the water, having wings or leads.

(4) It shall be unlawful for any person to take reptiles or amphibians with a foot hold or body-gripping trap.

(5) It shall be unlawful for any person to fail to inspect or maintain their trap once every 24 hour period.

(6) It shall be unlawful for any person to set, use or maintain traps unless they have attached thereto a durable waterproof tag bearing the name and address of the user legible in the English language.

(7) It shall be unlawful for any person to disturb or molest a legally set trap of another person without permission from the trap's owner or user.

(8) It shall be unlawful to take reptiles or amphibians with the aid or use of chemicals, deleterious or stupefying substances, smoke, explosives, winches, jacks or other device or material that may cause damage to or destroy the den, hibernaculum, nest, or immediate surroundings thereof.

(D) Permits

(1) It shall be unlawful to buy, sell, barter or trade any reptile or amphibian taken from the wild in Ohio except snapping turtles and softshell turtles.

(2) It shall be unlawful for any person 18 years of age or older to fail to apply to the division of wildlife for a propagating license under section 1533.71 of the revised code after taking possession of a reptile or amphibian, except:

(a) bullfrogs and green frogs legally acquired from outside the state, or propagated under the authority of a commercial propagating license issued under section 1533.71 of the revised code, that are accompanied by a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice, legible in the English language, and are possessed and sold solely for consumption as food.

(b) snapping turtles and softshell turtles legally acquired from outside the state, or legally obtained from within the state, that are accompanied by a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice, legible in the English language, and are possessed and sold solely for consumption as food.

(c) snapping turtles and softshell turtle heads, shells and feet legally acquired from outside the state, or legally obtained from within the state, that are accompanied by a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice, legible in the English language.

(d) wildlife ornamental products.

(3) It shall be unlawful for an Ohio resident 17 years of age or younger to posses, without applying for a propagating license under section 1533.71 of the revised code, more than 4 individuals or more than 25 eggs, tadpoles, or larvae of each species of reptile or amphibian.

(E) Records

(1) It shall be unlawful for any person possessing, buying, selling, trading, bartering, receiving or gifting reptiles or amphibians to fail to maintain accurate records, legible in the English language, which include the scientific and common names and the following, when applicable:

(a) the date of acquisition or transactions.

(b) the number of reptiles or amphibians by species.

(c) the birth dates of reptiles and amphibians propagated while in possession, by species.

(d) the location of capture and length of all reptiles and amphibians taken from the wild by species.

(e) the complete name and address of the person from whom the reptile or amphibian was purchased or otherwise acquired.

(f) the complete name and address of the person to whom the reptile or amphibian was sold, traded, bartered or given as a gift.

(g) the weight of snapping turtles or softshell turtles sold solely for consumption as food by species.

(h) the date of death or escape.

(i) the unique passive integrated transponder identifier of any implanted reptile.

(2) It shall be unlawful to fail to retain a certificate of origin, a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice legible in the English language, for each individual reptile or amphibian produced in captivity or legally obtained from out of state which includes:

(a) both the scientific and common name.

(b) number of reptiles and amphibians by species.

(c) date of acquisition or transaction.

(d) the complete name and address of the person from whom the reptile or amphibian was purchased or otherwise acquired.

(e) the propagating license number as issued under section 1533.71 of the revised code, when applicable.

(3) It shall be unlawful to fail to maintain on the premises as stated on the license, for a period of less than 5 years any:

(a) records required by this rule.

(b) certificate of origin, a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice required by this rule.

(4) It shall be unlawful to fail to make available for inspection, by an authorized representative of the division of wildlife, at any reasonable time:

(a) reptiles and amphibians possessed.

(b) records required by this rule.

(c) certificate of origin, a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice required by this rule.

(5) Records shall not be required for:

(a) retail store and restaurant sales of snapping turtles, softshell turtles, bullfrogs and green frogs to persons solely for their own consumption as food.

(b) persons who purchase snapping turtles, softshell turtles, bullfrogs and green frogs solely for their own consumption as food.

(c) wildlife ornamental products.

(F) Passive Integrated Transponders

(1) It shall be unlawful to possess any live reptile not permanently implanted with a unique passive integrated transponder with a frequency of 125 kHz, 134.2 kHz or 400 kHz in each:

(a) snake with a snout-vent length of 18 inches or greater.

(b) turtle with a straight-line carapace length of 4 inches or greater, except:

(i) snapping turtles and softshell turtles legally acquired from outside the state, or legally obtained from within the state, that are accompanied by a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice, legible in the English language, and are possessed and sold solely for consumption as food.

(2) It shall be unlawful to sell, barter, trade or gift any reptile, regardless of size, to another person that is not permanently implanted with a unique passive integrated transponder with a frequency of 125 kHz, 134.2 kHz or 400 kHz in each specimen, except:

(a) snapping turtles and softshell turtles legally acquired from outside the state, or legally obtained from within the state, that are accompanied by a bill of sale, receipt, record of acquisition or invoice, legible in the English language, and are possessed and sold solely for consumption as food.

(G) Release Into The Wild

(1) It shall be unlawful to release any reptile or amphibian into the wild that has been produced in captivity or obtained from outside the state.

(2) It shall be unlawful to release any reptile or amphibian into the wild that was taken from the wild in Ohio and was held in captivity for more than 30 days.

(3) It shall be unlawful to release any reptile or amphibian into the wild at any place other than the location of capture.

(4) It shall be unlawful to release any reptile or amphibian into the wild that has been held in captivity, in the same enclosure with any other species of reptile or amphibian.

(H) Special Areas

(1) Pymatuning Lake

(a) It shall be unlawful to take frogs and turtles in any manner or by any method except as provided in section 1501:31-13-07 of the administrative code.

(I) All definitions set forth in rule 1501:31-1-02 of the Administrative Code shall apply to this rule.

Replaces: 1501:31-13-05, 1501:31-25-04

Effective: 01/01/2011
R.C. 119.032 review dates: 12/31/2015
Promulgated Under: 119.03
Statutory Authority: 1531.08 , 1533.11
Rule Amplifies: 1531.08 , 1533.71
Prior Effective Dates: 3-15-00, 5-3-00, 2-1-02, 9-24-02, 9-24-07