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Connecticut State Laws Governing Private Possession of Exotic Animals

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Revised statutes to come.

CONN. GEN. STAT. §26-40A - Possession of potentially dangerous animals.

For the purposes of this section, the following shall be considered as potentially dangerous animals: The felidae, including the lion, leopard, cheetah, jaguar, ocelot, jaguarundi cat, puma, lynx and bobcat; the canidae, including the wolf and coyote; and the ursidae, including the black bear, grizzly bear and brown bear. No person shall possess a potentially dangerous animal. Any such animal illegally possessed may be ordered seized and may be disposed of as determined by the Commissioner of Environmental Protection. Any person who violates any provision of this section shall be fined not more than one hundred dollars for each offense. The provisions of this section shall not apply to municipal parks, zoos and nature centers, or museums, laboratories and research facilities maintained by scientific or educational institutions; to a person possessing a Bengal cat certified by an internationally recognized multiple-cat domestic feline breeding association as being without wild parentage for a minimum of four prior generations which cat was registered with the Commissioner of Agriculture on or before October 1, 1996, provided no such cat may be imported into this state after June 6, 1996; or to persons possessing animals legally on or before May 23, 1983. In any action taken by any official of the state or any municipality to control rabies, a Bengal cat shall be considered not vaccinated for rabies in accordance with accepted veterinary practice.(1967, P.A. 344; P.A. 83-191, S. 2, 9; P.A. 96-243, S. 5, 16.)


CONN. GEN. STAT. §26-55 - Permit for importing, possessing or liberating fish, wild birds, wild quadrupeds, reptiles or amphibians.

No person shall import or introduce into the state, or possess or liberate therein, any live fish, wild bird, wild mammal, reptile, amphibian or invertebrate unless such person has obtained a permit therefor from the commissioner provided nothing in this section shall be construed to require such permit for any primate species that weighs not more than fifty pounds at maturity that was imported or possessed in the state prior to October 1, 2003. Such permit may be issued at the discretion of the commissioner under such regulations as the commissioner may prescribe. The commissioner may by regulation prescribe the numbers of live fish, wild birds, wild mammals, reptiles, amphibians or invertebrates of certain species which may be imported, possessed, introduced into the state or liberated therein. The commissioner may by regulation exempt certain species or groups of live fish from the permit requirements. The commissioner may by regulation determine which species of wild birds, wild mammals, reptiles, amphibians or invertebrates must meet permit requirements. The commissioner may totally prohibit the importation, possession, introduction into the state or liberation therein of certain species which the commissioner has determined may be a potential threat to humans, agricultural crops or established species of plants, fish, birds, mammals, reptiles, amphibians or invertebrates. The commissioner may by regulation exempt from permit requirements organizations or institutions such as zoos, research laboratories, colleges or universities, public nonprofit aquaria or nature centers where live fish, wild birds, wild mammals, reptiles, amphibians or invertebrates are held in strict confinement. Any such fish, bird, mammal, reptile, amphibian or invertebrate illegally imported into the state or illegally possessed therein shall be seized by any representative of the Department of Environmental Protection and shall be disposed of as determined by the commissioner. Any person, except as provided in section 26-55a, who violates any provision of this section or any regulation issued by the commissioner as provided in this section shall be guilty of an infraction. Importation, liberation or possession of each fish, wild bird, wild mammal, reptile, amphibian or invertebrate in violation of this section or such regulation shall be a separate and distinct offense and, in the case of a continuing violation each day of continuance thereof shall be deemed to be a separate and distinct offense.

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