It’s a wildlife cover at the Erie Humane Society.
Erie Pet Amnesty Day avoids the release of unwanted wild animals that could harm other animals.
Here’s why it’s important for many people to think twice before looking after a wild animal.
Up, up, up, she goes. It is a medium-sized adult red-eared turtle.
She and her ilk are leading by example on the importance of the responsibility for many to take care of themselves.
“We hope that the people who have these animals instead of releasing them into the wild will bring them to us. And we can maintain them where necessary, adopt them in appropriate homes, ”said Keith Gisser, executive director of HERPS Alive Foundation.
Gisser said these types of turtles can capture the hearts of many children and adults.
However, many people are aware of the size of these turtles and the length of a commitment to care for them.
These turtles can grow so large that they can live at least 50 years. Gisser said that owning a reptile pet is a huge responsibility.
“A year later can be very, very different. That’s why we see more and more need for it now than in the past, ”said Gisser.
The main objective of the organization is to keep these species in a safe place.
“It’s a way of empowering people to do what’s responsible and not release into the environment,” said Sarah Stahlman, extension manager for Pennsylvania Sea Grant.
More than 150 of these pet species have already found their way to non-native habitats around the world.
They are most likely spread by local rivers and lakes. So Gisser said they had no place there.
“They will compete for food. They are more aggressive, they will fight with the other turtles and eventually we will get to a point where we will lose our native turtles, ”said Gisser.
For more information on aquatic invasive species, visit Pennsylvania Sea Grant online at http://seagrant.psu.edu or visit their Facebook page.