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The 192nd General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Section 19A: Permit to import live birds or mammals; rules and regulations; inspection and testing for disease; certification; disposition

Section 19A. A person shall not bring or cause to be brought into the commonwealth any live bird or mammal protected by this chapter, or any member of the family sciuridae of the order rodentia or any member of the order lagomorpha or any other member of the group vertebrata, wild by nature, unless he first obtains a permit so to do from the director, provided in the case of a dealer licensed both under clause (4) of section twenty-three and section thirty-nine A of chapter one hundred and twenty-nine that said dealer show evidence that he has secured a licensed buyer to purchase said bird or mammal, other than those listed in section five, or other such vertebrate, which are not excluded from the licensing provisions of said section twenty-three, and which are not on the special exemption list provided for in section twenty-three, nor shall he liberate any bird or mammal or other such vertebrates, nor shall he import into or transport within the commonwealth live foxes except in accordance with the provisions of an outstanding permit issued to him. Upon payment of a fee, the amount of which shall be determined annually by the commissioner of administration under the provision of section three B of chapter seven, the director may issue such permit and may include therein reasonable conditions as to the importation, inspection, transportation, and liberation of such birds and mammals and other vertebrates if he determines that such importation is not detrimental to resident wildlife populations of the commonwealth and provided that any bird or mammal or other such vertebrates to be imported is certified by a person recognized by the director as qualified to diagnose wildlife diseases to be free of any infectious disease or parasites if in his judgment such certification is deemed necessary. Application for this permit shall be filed with the director not later than ten days in advance of the importation date, and he may at any time for cause revoke such a permit. He may make, alter, amend, or repeal reasonable rules and regulations relative to the issuance of such permit and to the importation, inspection, transportation and liberating of birds and mammals and other such vertebrates.

Nothing in this section shall be construed to allow liberation into the wild of any pheasant or quail unless it shall have been certified by the department of food and agriculture that it has either been individually tested within the preceding six months, or that the parent stock has been tested within one year, and found free of salmonella pullorum as required in the official Massachusetts pullorum passed grade for poultry or of any transmissible poultry disease by the veterinary department of the University of Massachusetts, or shall have been so certified by a corresponding official of another state. The department of food and agriculture shall supply the director with the names and addresses of persons whose individual birds, or their parent stock, have met with the foregoing requirements, whereupon such individual birds and the offspring of such parent stock shall be eligible for release without being subjected to an individual test; provided, that they have not been confined for any period on premises where untested birds or poultry are kept.

Any such bird, mammal or vertebrate which is brought into the commonwealth in violation of this section, or which is so brought under authority of a permit granted hereunder and is found upon inspection to be diseased, may be confiscated by an officer empowered to enforce this chapter and shall be forfeited to the commonwealth and shall be disposed of by the director of law enforcement for the best interest of the commonwealth.