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Detailed Discussion of California Great Ape Laws



Hanna Coate


Animal Legal & Historical Center
Publish Date:
2011
Place of Publication: Michigan State University College of Law

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I. Introduction to Legal Control Over Great Apes in California

In California, all gorillas, chimpanzees, orangutans, bonobos, and gibbons are classified as “wildlife” that must be restricted by the state for their own health and welfare. According to the legislature, it is necessary to regulate the import, possession, use, and treatment of Great Apes because “many animals die in captivity or transit…some keepers of wild animals lack sufficient knowledge or facilities for the proper care of wild animals … [and] some wild animals are a threat to public health and safety.”[1] As a result, apes are heavily regulated at various levels of the state government. In general, it is illegal to import, possess, or sell apes for use as pets in California. Also, it is illegal to import, transport, or possess a great ape for any other purpose without a permit issued by the state’s Department of Fish and Game. Individuals and organizations that lawfully possess apes within the state must comply with a variety of state statutes and regulations that set minimum standards for the welfare of the animals and protect humans and other animals from the health and safety risks posed by captive apes.  

Political subdivisions of the state, including counties, cities, and towns also have statutory authority to restrict and/or regulate Great Apes within their geographical boundaries. Although state laws regulate the possession and use of apes, many communities have enacted more stringent local laws. Typically, local ordinances either: (1) ban the possession of apes for certain purposes, or entirely; (2) regulate activities involving apes; or (3) set minimum standards for the care and treatment of apes.

The various sources of law governing the import, possession, use and treatment of Great Apes are not uniformly applicable to all apes within the state. Instead, each statute and regulation must be analyzed according to the particular purpose for which an ape is possessed. The following discussion begins with a general overview of the various state statutes and regulations affecting Great Apes. It then analyzes the applicability of those laws to the possession and use of apes for specific purposes, including their possession as pets, for scientific research, for commercial purposes, and in sanctuaries. The discussion concludes with a compilation of local ordinances which govern the possession and use of apes within geographic subdivisions of the state.

 

II. Sources of State Laws

There are two types of state-level laws that govern the import, possession, use, and treatment of apes: (1) statutes, and (2) regulations. Statutes are laws that are enacted by the state legislature and regulations are laws that are enacted by state agencies. Without an express delegation of power from the state legislature, agencies have no authority to issue and enforce regulations. This delegation of power comes from a statute that directs an agency to accomplish a general goal, like regulating the importation of apes to prevent the spread of infectious diseases or setting minimum standards of care for captive apes. Once an agency is directed to accomplish a general goal, it has the authority to establish and enforce regulations that are consistent with that goal. On the other hand, some state statutes are self-implementing, which means they are complete and in effect without the need for regulations and enforcement by administrative agencies. Those statutes, which are in Section A below, directly regulate the conduct of the citizenry rather than directing an agency to do so. Section B identifies the state agencies that have been authorized by the state legislature to regulate certain aspects of the importation, possession, or use of apes, and discusses the regulations that those agencies have enacted that affect apes.

 

A. State Statutes

The following statutes were not enacted to protect apes exclusively; rather, they protect large groups of animals that include Great Apes. The state’s anti-cruelty statutes protect apes and other animals that are possessed for most purposes from abuse and neglect. California has an additional law that protects apes and other animals that are used in motion picture productions from actually being abused or killed in scenes that depict such actions. Also, state law mandates that all circuses and other traveling exhibitors that display apes and other live animals provide the local animal services agency of each municipality in which it performs with an itinerary of all performances that are scheduled in the state. Finally, California has enacted certain state laws that restrict the possession of animals that are listed as endangered or threatened under the Federal Endangered Species Act (ESA). Since all species of apes are listed as threatened or endangered, their importation, transportation, and sale is restricted under the Federal ESA as well as under state law.

i. Anti-Cruelty Statutes: The state’s anti-cruelty statutes,[2] which prohibit the infliction of unnecessary pain or suffering on an animal, generally apply to Great Apes within the state.[3] Because all captive apes live in mandatory confinement, the portions of the law that prohibit the confinement of such animals without adequate exercise, or without proper “care and attention,” including proper food, drink, shelter, or protection from the weather, are particularly relevant.[4] In addition, apes are sometimes trained or induced to perform for public entertainment with chemical, electrical, mechanical, and manual devices that inflict physical or psychological injuries. Accordingly, the provisions that prohibit any person from abusing, overworking, tormenting, or inflicting unnecessary cruelty or suffering on an animal may be utilized to protect apes that are physically abused in the course of training, to induce performances, or for any other reason.[5] In fact, law enforcement officers have the authority to confiscate any ape that is being forced to perform, but is unable to “by reason of lameness, sickness, feebleness, or neglect.”[6]

All state and local law enforcement officers, including humane officers employed by non-profit animal welfare organizations, may investigate any alleged violations of the anti-cruelty statutes (and any other law affecting Great Apes).[7] In California, private citizens have limited law enforcement authority, as well. Any citizen that witnesses the abuse or neglect of an ape in violation of the state’s anti-cruelty statute has the legal authority to personally arrest the offender without a warrant.[8] In addition, when an ape is possessed, maintained, or treated in a manner that violates (or is about to violate) the state’s anti-cruelty law (or any other state law governing the use or treatment of those animals), a complaint may be made, on oath, to any magistrate, who must issue a warrant for the arrest of the accused.[9] If a Great Ape is confiscated during the course of an animal cruelty investigation and prosecution, state law expressly prohibits the return of the ape to his or her owner when the prosecution results in a conviction.[10]

ii. Exhibition of Cruelty in Motion Pictures: It is illegal to depict “cruelty” or “killing” of an ape in a “motion picture”[11] if such acts actually occurred during the production of the motion picture.[12] The state legislature declared that any such conduct is unnecessary and is a nuisance, and as such may be prevented or abated with the issuance of a permanent injunction by a trial court.[13] This provision includes a statutory duty for the Attorney General, or the district attorney of the county in which the nuisance occurs, to commence an action to enjoin such conduct whenever there is reasonable cause to believe that acts constituting a violation of this Section have occurred or will occur.[14] The legislature expressed an intent that all actions brought to enjoin such nuisances be “adjudicated in the most speedy and expeditious manner,” and directed that any such actions take precedent over all other court proceedings, except criminal cases and election contests.[15]

iii. Notice to Animal Control Services Agency of Live Animal Performances: California is unique in that it requires any traveling circus or carnival that exhibits live animals (including apes) to provide proper notice to the local animal services agency of its intent to perform within a county or municipality.[16] In addition, any traveling exhibitor must provide the animal services agency of each county or municipality in which it intends to perform with a schedule of all of its performances within California.[17] These provisions theoretically should improve the ability of law enforcement agencies to monitor the welfare of apes used in traveling shows and to enforce the laws protecting those animals, even after the offenders have left an agency’s legal jurisdiction. Interestingly, although the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) also regulates the use of apes by traveling exhibitors, it does not require the exhibitors to submit an itinerary of their performances, and so the agency often has difficulty locating traveling exhibitors to conduct inspections.[18] This law provides a method whereby USDA inspectors can readily locate traveling exhibitors within California.

iv. Possession of Endangered Species: It is illegal to possess with the intent to sell, or to sell, the dead body or body parts of any endangered or threatened animal if the importation of the animals would be illegal under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973 (ESA).[19] Gorillas, orangutans, bonobos, gibbons, and wild populations of chimpanzees are all listed as endangered under the ESA, and their importation is illegal except under a permit issued by the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS).[20] Captive chimpanzees are listed as “threatened,” and (with the exception of chimpanzees that were captive in the U.S. in 1973 or chimpanzees that have been born in captivity in the U.S. since) it is illegal to import captive chimpanzees, except pursuant to a FWS permit.  So, in California it is illegal to possess with the intent to sell, or to sell, the dead body or body parts of any ape (except certain captive chimpanzees), without an FWS permit. Additionally, this law provides that any violation of the Federal FWS regulations that implement the ESA is also a violation of state law, which is prosecuted by the appropriate state and local officials.[21]

 

B. State Agencies and Regulations

In California, there are three state agencies that have been granted some level of authority to regulate the import, possession, use, or treatment of apes within the state. In most states, there is one agency that regulates wildlife, but in California, there are two: the Fish and Wildlife Commission and the Department of Fish and Game. The former sets policies and promulgates regulations and the latter administers wildlife programs and enforces the regulations. Because apes are considered wildlife in California, those two agencies share administrative authority over the possession, use, and treatment of apes within the state. The third agency, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH), regulates the importation of animals into the state and is also responsible for monitoring the use of animals by certain scientific research facilities that operate within the state. So, the agency’s administrative authority extends to apes that are imported for any purpose and to apes that are maintained for scientific research by certain facilities.

i. The Fish and Wildlife Commission and the Department of Fish and Game

The legislature has granted non-exclusive authority to the Fish and Wildlife Commission (Commission) and the Department of Fish and Game (Department) to regulate the possession and use of Great Apes in California.[22] Pursuant to the Fish and Game Code, it is illegal for any “person”[23] to import, transport, or possess a Great Ape without a permit from the Department.[24] The Commission is responsible for establishing regulations regarding the minimum qualifications and requirements necessary to obtain a permit and the specific purposes for which permits will be issued, as well as setting minimum standards of care for apes possessed by permittees. The Department (in cooperation with the Department of Food and Agriculture) administers the permitting program,[25] sets the permit and inspection fees,[26] and enforces the minimum standards of care. [27]

In order to import an ape into the state, an owner or carrier must possess a permit issued by the Department (see permit requirements discussed below),[28] and transport the animal in accordance with all applicable transportation requirements.[29] Immediately upon arrival in the state, he or she must notify the nearest “enforcing officer” and hold the ape in confinement pending a Department inspection.[30]

In order to obtain a permit[31] to possess a Great Ape within the state, an applicant must: (1) meet the Commission’s minimum age and experience requirements;[32] (2) have an inspected and approved facility for the animal;[33] and (3) possess the ape for an approved purpose.[34]  Applicants must be at least 18 years of age, and must possess at least two years of full-time, hands-on experience caring for any restricted species in a similar or related type of activity for which the permit is requested. At least one year of the full-time hands-on professional experience must be with apes or a closely related taxonomic family.[35] Applicants must also submit: (1) certification by a veterinarian that the applicant’s animals are being cared for as required by law; (2) a letter of recommendation by the owner or operator of the facility where the applicant gained his or her professional experience; and (3) proof of current United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) licensure or registration and a copy of the most recent USDA facility inspection report. Either the Commission or the Department must deny a permit application if either agency finds that an applicant will be unable to properly care for an ape or to meet any other requirements for the importation, transportation, possession, or confinement of such animals.[36]

Permittees must comply with all relevant permit[37] and record-keeping requirements,[38] minimum standards of care, and all other relevant rules, which vary according to the intended use of an ape.[39] In general, all apes must be maintained pursuant to certain minimum standards of care, regardless of the particular use for which they are possessed.[40] Those standards generally govern the treatment, feeding, and housing of apes.

Treatment: It is illegal to handle or treat apes in a manner that causes unnecessary discomfort, behavioral stress, or physical harm.[41] Apes may not be chained or tethered to any fixed object, except when repairs are being made to a cage, or during filming, training, or exhibition.[42] All animals must be observed daily for signs of stress, injury, or disease, and must be provided with “adequate” veterinary care.[43] Also, it is illegal to kill or attempt to kill apes, except in the case of euthanasia that is “appropriately directed by a licensed veterinarian or animal health technician.”[44]

Feeding: Apes must have constant access to clean water (or as often as necessary for “health and comfort”) and must be fed daily with uncontaminated, unspoiled food that is of “sufficient quantity and nutritive value to maintain the animal in good health” and is appropriate for the “age, species, condition, and size of each animal.”[45]

Housing: All cages and enclosures must be constructed pursuant to particular specifications, which vary depending on the size and species of the Great Ape.[46] The housing requirements for apes afford those animals a great deal more space than the Federal Animal Welfare Act (AWA) requirements. For example, under the AWA, a permanent cage for a single chimpanzee must have at least 25 square feet of floor space, which is approximately 5 feet x 5 feet, but California’s regulations mandate that a permanent cage for a single chimpanzee must have at least 200 square feet of floor space, which is 20 feet x 10 feet.  Animal excrement must be removed from cages and enclosures daily, and such enclosures must be disinfected as necessary.[47]

All facilities that possess apes pursuant to a state-issued permit may be inspected periodically to ensure that the foregoing standards of care are being met.[48]

The Department has dedicated law enforcement officers who are employed by the agency, and who have the power and authority to conduct inspections[49], seize animals,[50] and enforce the statutes and regulations related to the importation, transportation, and possession of Great Apes within the state.[51] In addition, state plant quarantine officers, state and local law enforcement agents, and county agricultural commissioners are authorized to enforce the laws and regulations governing the permit program and minimum standards of care for captive apes.[52] The possession of a Great Ape in violation of the Fish and Game Code or any regulation adopted by the Commission is a misdemeanor, and may result in: forfeiture of the affected animal(s); liability for costs associated with seizing and holding the animals;[53] liability for the costs of the investigation, including attorney and expert witness fees;[54] suspension or permanent revocation of a permit;[55] civil, criminal and administrative fines; imprisonment; or any combination thereof.[56] California law adds an additional tier of civil liability for any person that engages in the unlawful interstate transport[57] of a Great Ape that is either: (a) possessed in violation any of the aforementioned rules;[58] or (b) shipped in a container that is not marked or labeled as required by law.[59]   

ii. California Department of Public Health

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) regulates the importation of all wild animals, including apes,[60] in order to protect the public from the “disease hazards” associated with those animals.[61] The process of importing apes is somewhat complex and the requirements are not identical for all importers. In general, all importers must have an agency-issued permit to import apes and must quarantine the animal(s) immediately upon their arrival in California.[62]

In order to obtain a permit to import an ape, an applicant must submit a permit application,[63] with the appropriate permit fees,[64] to CDPH’s Veterinary Public Health Section. The application must identify the point of first arrival of the ape and the facility that will quarantine the ape upon arrival.[65] If the quarantine facility is not one that has already been approved by CDPH,[66] the applicant must also submit an application for CDPH approval of the quarantine facility.[67] All quarantine facilities must meet stringent agency standards[68] and pass an on-site inspection before holding animals.[69] Prior to issuing a permit, CDPH must make a determination that the importation of the ape will not endanger the public health and safety.[70] If CDPH approves the application, proposed quarantine facility, and point of first arrival of the animal, the agency must issue a permit[71] within a certain time-frame.[72] One copy of the permit must be sent to the local health officer of the county where the animal will be quarantined and two copies must remain with the animal(s) throughout the import and quarantine process.[73]    

Once they arrive in the state,[74] all apes must be quarantined[75] in an approved facility for at least 30 days, during which time they receive an initial physical examination and tuberculin test,[76] followed by a repeat physical examination and tuberculin test 30 days later.[77] Great Apes may be released from quarantine if all of the following conditions are satisfied: (1) both tuberculin tests are negative; (2) there are no visible signs of oral ulcers; (3) there is no clinical evidence of dysentery or diarrhea, emesis, emaciation, contagious skin lesions, central nervous system disturbances, jaundice, abnormal respiratory conditions, or zoonotic diseases. CDPH will authorize the release of a quarantined ape upon its receipt of the requisite examination and testing records, [78] along with a written statement by a facility’s attending veterinarian that the ape has been examined and is healthy.[79]

CDPH has dedicated law enforcement officers, who are employed by the agency, and who have the power and authority to conduct investigations and enforce any laws or agency regulations regarding animal importation.[80] In addition, any “local health officer,” or state or local agency with which CDPH has contracted, may enforce the foregoing provisions.[81] An ape that is imported in violation of the California Health and Safety Code, or CDPH regulations must be either killed or returned to the point of origin at the expense of the owner or importer.[82] Any violation of these laws is a misdemeanor.[83]

 

III. Analysis of State Laws as Applied to Specific Uses

The statutes and regulations that are discussed in Section II all govern certain aspects of the import, possession, use, or treatment of captive apes that are possessed for various purposes. The laws are not uniformly applicable to all apes; instead, they vary according to the particular purpose for which an ape is possessed. In the U.S., captive apes are generally possessed for use as pets, scientific research subjects, for exhibition or other commercial purposes, or they are retired and live in sanctuaries. The remainder of this section discusses how the state’s laws affect apes that are possessed for those purposes.

 

A. Possession of Great Apes as Pets

In general, it is illegal to possess Great Apes as pets in California.[84] However, the ban is subject to a grandfather clause, which allows any qualified person that possessed an ape in California prior to January 1992 to continue to possess the animal for the remainder of his or her life. In order to qualify for the exemption, an ape’s owner must possess an “animal care permit” issued by the California Department of Fish and Game.[85] A permittee may only possess and provide care for the individual ape covered by the permit. It does not authorize the acquisition of additional animals or any activity involving the permitted ape beyond that which is medically necessary for the care of the animal.[86]

The general possession, maintenance, and housing requirements, discussed in Section II(B)(i) above apply to all individuals that possess apes as pets. In addition, the state’s anti-cruelty laws, discussed in Section II(A)(i) above, protect all Great Apes that are kept as pets.

 

B. Possession of Great Apes for Biomedical Research

It is not illegal for research facilities to acquire and possess apes; in fact research facilities are expressly exempt from the Fish and Game Code’s permit requirements for the importation, transportation, and possession of those animals (see Section II(B)(i), above).[87] However, another provision of the Fish and Game Code makes it illegal to “possess, transport, import, export, propagate, purchase, sell, or transfer” any ape for the purpose of “maiming, injuring, or killing” the animal for “gain.”[88] Therefore, although the import and possession of apes by research facilities is not restricted under the Fish and Game Code, the use and treatment of those animals is. It is illegal for research facilities to conduct experiments on apes that involve maiming, injuring, or killing apes for “gain,” or to acquire or possess apes for the purpose of conducting such experiments. Also, all research facilities that lawfully possess apes for research activities that do not include “maiming, injuring, or killing” the animals for gain must comply with the Department of Fish and Game’s minimum standards of care for apes, as discussed in Section II(B)(i), above.[89]

Although research facilities are not required to secure an import permit from the Department of Fish and Game prior to importing apes, those facilities must comply with the California Department of Public Health’s (CDPH) import permit requirements, discussed in Section II(B)(ii) above. Although research facilities are subject to CDPH’s quarantine requirements for imported apes, the agency may authorize “variations” from quarantine requirements that are “not compatible with the objective of a specific research project.”[90]

The CDPH also administers a comprehensive statewide Laboratory Animal Use Approval Program that was established in 1951 to regulate the care and use of apes (and all other live, warm-blooded animals) by research facilities.[91] Generally, it is illegal for a facility to maintain or use apes for scientific experiments without a “certificate of approval,” which authorizes the use of those animals for diagnostic purposes, education, or research.[92] Approved facilities must comply with certain minimum standards for the care and treatment of apes and are subject to periodic inspections by CDPH to ensure compliance with those standards.[93] However, all laboratories that are controlled or regulated by the National Institutes of Health or the Federal Bureau of Animal Industry are expressly exempt from CDPH regulation.[94] The Federal Bureau of Animal Industry was abolished in 1953, so that exemption is obsolete. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) oversees the use of animals in research projects that are conducted or funded by any Public Health Service agency. The use of apes in experiments that are not conducted or funded by those agencies are subject to the CDPH certification requirement and all other provisions of the California Health and Safety Code that govern the use of apes in diagnostic procedures and medical research. Any person that uses an ape for scientific research in violation of the Laboratory Animal Use Approval Program is guilty of a misdemeanor. Although the statutes do not authorize CDPH to exempt other types of research facilities[95] from these requirements, the agency has in fact done so. According to a 2009 statement issued by the Department, “laboratories which are subject to federal regulation are exempt from state approval…only those laboratories which use exclusively Rattus, Mus, and/or birds, and do not receive federal funds for animal use activities must now apply for approval by the California Department of Public Health.”[96]   

Although the Fish and Game Code prohibits the maiming, injuring, or killing of apes for gain, the state’s anti-cruelty statutes (discussed in Section II(A)(i) above) do not prohibit the maiming, injuring, or killing of apes used for “properly conducted scientific experiments or investigations performed under the authority of the faculty of a regularly incorporated medical college or university of this state.”[97] So, research facilities may be prosecuted under the Fish and Game Code for maiming, injuring, or killing apes for gain, but not under the Penal Code. However, scientific experiments that are not “properly conducted,” (meaning that they are either not approved by a facility’s Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee or are otherwise conducted in violation of the Federal Animal Welfare Act or state or local laws) are not exempt from the state’s anti-cruelty statute and may be subject to prosecution under those laws, as well as the Fish and Game Code.

 

C. Possession of Great Apes for Entertainment and other Commercial Purposes

The commercial use of apes generally includes breeding, sale, display and exhibition of those animals. Generally, any individual or facility wishing to import or possess an ape for commercial purposes must secure permits prior to importing or possessing the apes, and must comply with minimum standards of care for the maintenance, transportation, and exhibition of those animals.

Importation: It is illegal to import an ape for commercial purposes without a permit from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and from the California Department of Fish and Game (Department), as discussed in Sections II(B)(i) and (ii), above. In addition, all apes that are imported must be examined, tested for tuberculosis, and quarantined for at least 30 days, pursuant to CDPH’s quarantine requirements. However, certain nonresident traveling animal exhibitors (i.e. circuses),[98] accredited zoos,[99] and breeders[100] may be exempt from part, or all, of the permit or quarantine requirements.[101]

Possession: Generally, individuals and facilities that wish to possess apes for commercial purposes must secure one of the following Department of Fish and Game permits:

a)      Exhibiting: authorizes a resident or nonresident to import, transport, and possess a Great Ape for commercial exhibition purposes.[102]

b)      Single Event Breeding for Exhibitor: authorizes a resident that already holds an “Exhibiting” permit to conduct a one-time, single breeding of his or her ape.[103]

c)      Breeding: authorizes a resident to import, transport, and possess a Great Ape for breeding purposes.[104]

d)      Broker/Dealer: authorizes a resident or nonresident to do either of the following: (1) act as a broker or dealer in a transaction involving a Great Ape; or (2) commercially transport an ape between permittees.[105]

To qualify for a permit, applicants must meet the minimum experience requirements discussed in Section II(B)(i) above, and must have an approved facility that meets the minimum standards for housing and maintenance of apes.  Facilities that are accredited by the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums AZA are exempt from the permit requirements,[106] but like all other commercial facilities, they must comply with the Department of Fish and Game’s minimum standards for the housing, maintenance and care of apes[107] outlined in Section II(B)(i), above.

Transient facilities, such as traveling zoos, circuses, and animal acts, are subject to different standards for the housing of apes that are part of mobile exhibits.[108] Animals that never leave their cages for exercise or performances may be kept in enclosures that are equal to ½ the minimum permanent space required for their species.[109] Apes that occasionally leave their cages for performances, but that are not exercised regularly, may be kept in enclosures that are equal to 1/3 the minimum permanent space required for that species.[110] Finally Great Apes that are let out of their cages for performances and exercise may be kept in transport cages during the entire mobile exhibition.[111] There is no maximum time period for housing Great Apes under these conditions.

Transportation: In addition to securing any necessary permits to transport an ape (see the discussion on permits for the possession of apes, above) permittees must comply with a variety of detailed regulations governing the transportation of those animals. Apes that are transported pursuant to a “Broker/Dealer” permit must be accompanied at all times by an invoice that contains certain information,[112] and the animals may not be kept in transport cages for any more than 48 hours.[113] However the regulations are silent on minimum construction standards for those transport cages.

On the other hand, permittees that transport Great Apes for exhibition purposes must comply with extensive and detailed transportation requirements.[114] All transport cages must meet the following size requirements: (1) the length and width must be at least equal to the length of the Great Ape, as measured from the buttocks to the top of the head; (2) the height must be at least 1 ½ times the height of the animal when it is in its natural posture; (3) the cage must be large enough to allow the animal to lie down; and (4) notwithstanding the foregoing provisions, adult chimpanzees and orangutans must be housed in transport cages that are at least 4 feet long x 4 feet wide x 4 feet high with one shelf or perch.[115] Other requirements for the transportation of apes that are used for exhibition purposes include: (1) minimum cage construction standards;[116] (2) ambient temperature requirements;[117] (3) cargo segregation requirements;[118] (4) minimum sanitation, air quality and quantity, exposure, and ventilation standards;[119] (5) consignee notification requirements upon arrival;[120] (6) safety, observation, and sustenance requirements;[121] (7) loading and unloading provisions;[122] and (8) labeling and record-keeping requirements.[123]   

Exhibition: In addition to the possession and transport requirements discussed above, all exhibitors must comply with the Fish and Game Commission’s regulations regarding the exhibition of apes.[124] All animals must be displayed either in an escape-proof area or enclosure, or under the immediate control of a handler, and must be handled so there is “no perceived risk to the public,” with “sufficient distance” allowed between a Great Ape and the public.[125]

The duration and conditions of display must be “consistent with the animal's health and comfort.”[126] Accordingly, apes must be allowed to rest for a minimum of four hours per day.[127]

Permits issued for the commercial use of Great Apes, all requisite documents, and the facilities and cages where the animals are confined, are subject to inspection by enforcement officers. Any animals that are kept in violation of the aforementioned statutes and regulations may be confiscated, and all violations are subject to criminal prosecution and other penalties as discussed in Sections II(B)(i) and (ii) above.

In addition, to the agency requirements and regulations, all permittees that possess apes for commercial purposes must comply with the various state laws discussed in Section II(A), above. Failure to comply with those laws may result in confiscation and forfeiture of the affected animals, and civil and criminal penalties.   

 

D. Possession of Great Apes by Sanctuaries

The California Department of Fish and Game (Department) may issue a “Shelter” permit to any resident who: (1) qualifies for such a permit, as discussed in Section II(B)(i) above; and (2) has a signed statement from the Department’s regional manager verifying the need for a shelter or similar facility in the area. Such a permit authorizes the permittee to import an ape under limited circumstances,[128] and to transport and possess an ape for humane purposes. No commercial use of the animals is authorized under this type of permit. However, shelter permittees may exhibit the animals at their facilities for “fund-raising purposes.”[129]

All shelter permittees must comply with the import and quarantine requirements of the California Fish and Wildlife Commission (Commission) and the California Department of Public Health, discussed in Sections II(B)(i) and (ii) above. In addition, such permittees must satisfy the Commission’s minimum care and maintenance requirements, as discussed in Section II(B)(i), above. All shelter permits, required records, facilities, and animals are subject to inspection by enforcement officers. Any animals that are kept in violation of the aforementioned statutes and regulations may be confiscated, and all violations are subject to criminal prosecution and other penalties as discussed in Sections II(B)(i) and (ii) above.

In addition, to agency requirements and regulations, all shelter permittees must comply with the state’s anti-cruelty laws, discussed in Section II(A)(i) above. Failure to comply with those laws may result in confiscation or forfeiture of the animals, fines, and imprisonment.  

 

IV. Local Ordinances

Certain provisions within California’s state statutes authorize counties and local municipalities to prohibit or regulate the local possession and use of Great Apes, regardless of whether a would-be possessor has secured a state or federal permit to keep such animals.[130] There are many local ordinances in California that directly and indirectly govern the possession, use, and treatment of apes. The following list of ordinances is not exhaustive; rather, it is a partial list of local laws that demonstrates how some towns, cities, and counties in California have addressed the issue.

Arcadia 4131.4, 4137.6: It is illegal to keep Great Apes anywhere within the city limits. (Added by Ordinance No. 1621 adopted 2-7-78)

Alameda 7-9.6: It is illegal for any individual, corporation, firm, partnership, trust, or any other legal entity to possess Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. No. 2747 N.S. 3)

Azusa 10-3: It is illegal to possess any wild and dangerous animal within the city limits. The ordinance does not define “wild and dangerous.” The ban does not apply to the temporary transport of such animals through the city nor to properly permitted circuses and animal exhibitions. (Code 1971, § 10.04.030)

Banning 6.28.010: No private person shall maintain a “wild or vicious animal” for display or for exhibition purposes, whether gratuitously or for a fee. The ordinance does not define “wild or vicious.” (Code 1965, § 4-71.)

Brisbane 6.08.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to possess Great Apes within city limits. The permit requirement does not apply to animal research facilities and certain animal dealers. (Ord. 506 § 1(part), 2005)

Butte County 4-30 et seq.: A local permit is required to possess Great Apes in the county. (Ord. No. 3992, § 2 (part), 11-4-08)

Campbell 7.14.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to possess Great Apes within city limits. The permit requirement does not apply to zoos, research facilities, academic facilities, and animal rescue organizations. (Ord. 1964 § 1(part), 1998).

Chino Hills 6.16.010: It is illegal to keep or maintain Great Apes on any property within the city limits. (Ord. 23 § 3, 1992; Ord. 92-16 § 1 (part)) The ban does not apply to pet shops and research facilities. (Ord. 92-16 § 1 (part))

Chowchilla 6.04.270: A permit is required to keep Great Apes within the city limits and possessors are subject to local regulations. (Ord. 405-98 § 1 (part), 1998)

Coalinga 6-1.32: It is illegal to purchase, possess, or sell Great Apes. The ban does not apply to the following: animal shelters, zoos, educational and research facilities, circuses, sideshows, and amusement shows, if “protective devices adequate to prevent such animal[s] from escaping or injuring the public are provided.”

Commerce 8.04.510: It a “nuisance” and is illegal to “keep, own, and/or maintain” Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. 576 §1, 2004: Ord. 255 §1(part), 1978).

Contra Costa 84-2 et seq.: It is illegal to keep Great Apes in any residential district within the county limits; 416-11.002 et seq.: Anyone wishing to possess Great Apes within the county must register the animals. Properly permitted museums, and research and educational facilities are exempt from the registration requirement. (Ord. 80-97 § 2).

Corona 6.17.010 et seq.: Any exhibition, circus, performance or similar event in which Great Apes are exhibited or required to perform for the amusement or entertainment of an audience is prohibited within city limits. The ban does not apply to exhibition of the animals for educational purposes by institutions that are accredited by the American Zoological Association or by the Association of Sanctuaries.

Costa Mesa 3-145 et seq.: A permit is required to keep, maintain, or possess Great Apes within the city limits. The permit requirement does not apply to qualified research and educational facilities, treatment and boarding facilities and animal dealers. (Ord. No. 07-16, § 1, 8-7-07)

Cotati 7.24.400 et seq.: It is illegal for any person to “board, have, keep, maintain or have in his/her possession or control” an ape “for any length of time, in any zoning district in the city.” (Ord. 788 § 1(part), 2006).

Diamond Bar 6.16.010 et seq.: A license is required to keep Great Apes within the city limits. Licensees are subject to additional county regulations regarding the possession of such animals. (Ord. No. 14(1989), § 2(10.28.060), 6-27-89)

Duarte 8.04.550: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the city limits. While in the streets and other public places, apes must be chained, or otherwise attached to a competent person. (Ord. 432 § 1 (part), 1978)

East Palo Alto 6.12.010 et seq.: A permit must be issued by the local health department for the possession of Great Apes within city limits. Permittees are subject to additional local regulations regarding the keeping of such animals. (Prior code § 5-10.103) Qualified research facilities, boarding and treatment facilities and animal dealers are exempt from the permit requirements and additional regulations. (Prior code § 5-10.110)

El Centro 5-42: It is illegal to “offer for sale, give away, bring into or maintain” a Great Ape within the city limits. Zoos and circuses are exempt from the prohibition unless their actions or omissions involving such animals pose a public health and welfare hazard. (Code 1962, § 4-80; Ord. No. 74-10)

El Cerrito 7.08.020: A permit is required to “keep” Great Apes within city limits. (Ord. 87-10 Div. II (part), 1987.)

El Paso de Robles 8.04.150: A conditional use permit is required to “raise and keep” Great Apes in residential areas of the city. (Ord. 691 N.S. § 2, 3, 1995: Ord. 684 N.S. § 3, 1995: Ord. 355 N.S. § 1, 1973; Ord. 312 N.S. § 1 (Art. I § 15), 1970)

Encinitas 9.22.010 et seq.: Any exhibition, circus, performance or similar event in which Great Apes are exhibited or forced to perform for the entertainment, amusement or benefit of an audience is prohibited within city limits. The ban does not apply to exhibition of the animals for educational purposes. (Ord. No. 2002-04)

Fillmore 9.12.080: A license is required to own, harbor, or keep Great Apes within city limits (Ord. 622 § 1 (part), 1989); 9.12.010 et seq.:  Licensees must comply with local regulations regarding the possession of such animals. (Ord. 622 § 1 (part), 1989)

Fontana 4-6: No person shall have, keep, maintain, breed, sell, trade or let for hire any wild, dangerous or nondomestic animal without first receiving special authorization and securing a license. Licensees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals.  (Code 1968, § 5-27; Ord. No. 1041, § 1(5-27), 12-3-91)

Fresno 10-202:  No person shall keep, transport, or allow to be kept or transported in the city any mammal or reptile belonging to a wild and predatory species, or any animal of a species known to be vicious or dangerous; provided, however, that the Council may by resolution grant a permit for the keeping or transporting in the city of any wild animal solely for exhibition or experimental purposes under such conditions as may be imposed and for such period of time as may be allowed. (Orig. Ord. 3755; Am. Ord. 5005, 1957; Am. Ord. 5780, 1960; Rep. and Added Ord. 6769, 1966, based on former Secs. 8-207, 8-209.1).

Glendale 6.04.103: It is illegal to keep or maintain Great Apes within city limits. The ban does not apply to authorized (permitted) circuses, carnivals, educational facilities, and the city animal shelter. (Ord. 5492 § 1 (part), 2005: Ord. 5370 § 4, 2004: prior code § 13-16)

Grand Terrace 6.04.230: No person shall have, keep, maintain, breed, sell, trade or let for hire a Great Ape without first receiving special authorization from the health officer. Possessors must comply with various local regulations. The aforementioned provisions do not apply to “licensed circuses, carnivals, zoos or other collections of wild animals under jurisdiction of a city, state or federal government.” (Ord. 206 (part), 2003: Ord. 1 § 1(part), 1978: county code § 32.0112)

Gustine 7-3-182: A local permit is required to have, keep, maintain, or possess a Great Ape within city limits. Permittees must comply with local ordinances regulating the possession of such animals.

Hemet 10-3: A permit is required to possess Great Apes within city limits. (Ord. No. 748; Code 1984, § 7102)

Hesperia 6.08.050: A local permit is required to “have, keep, maintain, breed, sell, trade or let for hire” any Great Ape within city limits. The licensing requirement does not apply to “licensed circuses, carnivals, zoos or other collections of wild animals under jurisdiction of the city, state or federal government.”  (Ord. 2002-08 Exh. C (part), 2002)

Huntington Beach 7.14.010 et seq.: Any exhibition, circus, performance or similar event in which Great Apes are forced to perform for the entertainment, amusement or benefit of an audience is prohibited within city limits. The ban does not apply to exhibition of the animals for educational purposes or to groups of 20 or fewer people. (Ord. No. 3586-12/02)

Irvine 4-5-1001: A permit is required to keep or maintain Great Apes within city limits. Permittees must comply with all permit conditions and relevant local regulations. (Ord. No. 09-10, § 1, 9-22-09); 4-5-1008:  The permit requirements and city regulations do not apply to individuals transporting such animals through the city limits or to city-licensed circuses, carnivals and animal exhibitions.

Kern County 7.08.300: A local permit is required to “have, keep, maintain, breed, sell, trade, exhibit or let for hire” any ape within the county. The permit requirement does not apply to licensed circuses, carnivals, pet shops, veterinary hospitals or zoos. (Ord. G-6942 § 5 (part), 2002)

La Mesa 8.04.020: It is illegal to own, possess, or maintain any Great Ape within the city limits. (Ord. 2597, § 1; March 24, 1992)

La Palma 5-131: A local permit is required to possess a Great Ape within the city limits. (Ord. No. 2009-08, § 1, 12-15-09.); 5-144:  The permit requirement does not apply to circuses, zoos, museums and other animal exhibitions. (Ord. No. 2009-08, § 1, 12-15-09.)

Laguna Woods 5.20.010: A local permit is required to keep or maintain a Great Ape within city limits. (Ord. No. 00-07, § 2(6.22.010), 10-18-2000); 5.20.040: The permit requirement does not apply to individuals transporting such animals through the city nor to a city-licensed circus, carnival, or other live animal exhibition. (Ord. No. 00-07, § 2(6.22.040), 10-18-2000)

Lake County 4-40: The sale, possession for sale, importation or breeding of any Great Ape is prohibited. A permit is required to possess or maintain apes within the county. (Ord. No. 1110, § 5, 10-16-79); 4-40.4: Permittees must comply with all local regulations regarding the possession of the same. (Ord. No. 1110, § 5, 10-16-79); 4-40.5: The ban, permit requirements, and other relevant regulations do not apply to zoos, circuses, or educational or research facilities unless such entities commit an act or omission involving apes that creates a public health or welfare hazard. (Ord. No. 1110, § 5, 10-16-79)

Lodi 6.08.010 et seq.: It is illegal to “harbor, keep, or have” any Great Ape within the city limits. (Ord. 1608 § 1 (part), 1995)

Long Beach 6.16.030 et seq.: A local permit is required to possess any “dangerous or carnivorous wild animal.” (ORD-09-0022, § 5, 2009); 21.51.210: It is illegal to keep “dangerous or wild animals” in residential zones. (ORD-06-0012 § 5, 2006; Ord. C-7780 § 2, 2001; Ord. C-6533 § 1 (part), 1988); 6.16.080: It is illegal to breed Great Apes in Long Beach. (ORD-09-0022, § 5, 2009); 5.26.020: Long Beach heavily regulates circuses, which often exhibit Great Apes. A local permit must be secured, which costs $1,000 per day to cover the cost of placing two animal control officers on site for a minimum of eight hours per day to monitor the exhibition and enforce animal laws.

Los Angeles County 22.20.040: It is illegal to keep apes in any residential zone in the county.

Los Gatos 4.70.005: A local permit is required to keep, have, maintain, sell, trade, or let for hire any Great Ape within the city limits. Zoos, educational institutions, and research facilities are exempt from the permit requirements. (Ord. No. 1971, § II, 2-22-94)

Madera County 6.04.270 et seq.: A local license is required to possess a Great Ape. (Ord. 479 § 2 (part), 1984)

Marin County 8.04.182 et seq.: It is illegal to possess Great Apes in any residential zone for any length of time. (Ord. 3476 § 1 (part), 2007: Ord. 3377 § 1 (part), 2003); 8.04.230 et seq.: Live animal performances involving Great Apes are regulated but not prohibited. (Ord. 3476 § 1 (part), 2007: Ord. 3377 § 1 (part), 2003)

Marina 6.04.060: It is illegal to keep an ape as a pet or for display or exhibition. The ban does not apply to zoos, performing animal exhibitions, or circuses. (Ord. 76-8 § 6, 1976); 6.04.070: “No performing animal exhibition or circus shall be permitted in which animals are induced or encouraged to perform through the use of chemical, mechanical, electrical or manual devices in a manner which will cause, or is likely to cause, physical injury or suffering.” (Ord. 76-8 § 7, 1976)

Maywood 4-5.02: A local permit is required to have, keep, maintain, or possess a Great Ape within city limits. (§ 1, Ord. 66-15, eff. October 27, 1966)

Mendocino County 10.12.030 et seq.: A permit is required to keep, have, maintain, sell, trade, or let for hire any ape in the county. Permittees must comply with permit conditions and requirements.  (Ord. No. 4058 (part), adopted 2000.)

Mendota 6.52.010, 6.40.010: It is illegal to possess any dangerous or wild animal within city limits. (Ord. 05-01 (part), 2005), (Ord. 05-01 (part), 2005)

Mission Viejo 10.01.260: A local permit is required to have, keep, or maintain Great Apes within city limits. (Ord. No. 88-12, § 3(4-1-94), 6-27-88)

Monte Sereno 6.05.010: A local permit is required to keep, have, maintain, sell, trade, or let for hire a Great Ape within the city limits.

Montebello 6.20.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to possess Great Apes within the city limits. The permit requirement does not apply to zoos, circuses, museums and other exhibitions; 6.28.040 et seq.: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the city limits, and such animal must be chained, or otherwise attached to a competent person, while in the streets and other public places.

Moraga 6.01.010: Anyone wishing to possess a Great Ape within the city limits must register the animal. Properly permitted museums, research facilities, and educational institutions are exempt from the registration requirement. (Ord. 212 § 2, 2006)

Morgan Hill 6.28.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to keep, have, maintain, sell, trade or let for hire a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. 1838 N.S. § 1 (part), 2007: Ord. 1209 N.S. (part), 1995: Ord. 553 N.S. § A (part), 1981); 6.28.020: Zoos, academic institutions, and research facilities are exempt from the permit requirements. (Ord. 1209 N.S. (part), 1995: Ord. 553 N.S. § A (part), 1981)

Mountain View 5.32 et seq.: A local permit is required to have, keep, maintain, sell, trade or let for hire a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. Zoos, academic institutions, and research facilities are exempt from the permit requirements. (Ord. No. 32.72, 11/13/72; Ord. No. 14.79, 3/26/79; Ord. No. 7.82, 4/27/82.)

National City 8.32.010: It is illegal to keep, possess, or maintain a Great Ape within the city limits. The ban does not apply to properly permitted travelling circuses that conduct temporary exhibitions in the city. (Ord. 2245 § 6 (part), 2004; Ord. 2171 § 8 (part), 2000); 8.04.015, 8.08.020: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the city limits. (Ord. 2171 § 3 (part), 2000: Ord. 828 § 6, 1951); It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to graze on another person’s property without his or her written consent. (Ord. 2171 § 3 (part), 2000: Ord. 828 § 7, 1951)

Nevada City 6.28.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to have, keep, maintain, sell, trade or let for hire a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. 92-10 § 2 (part), 1992)

Newark 6.08.140, 6.36.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to own or keep a Chimpanzee within the city limits. (Ord. 159 Art. VIII § 1, 1979); Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. 159 Art. VIII § 3, 1979);  Educational and research facilities as well as boarding facilities, veterinary hospitals, and certain animal dealers are exempt from the permit requirements. (Ord. 159 Art. IX § 1, 1979)

Novato 3-1.23 et seq.: It is illegal to possess Great Apes in residential zone. (Ord. No. 1530, § 1)

Oceanside 4.6.1: It is illegal to maintain, display, or possess any Great Ape “that creates a public disturbance or is a danger to public health and safety as determined by a state humane officer.” (Ord. No. 86-15, § 1.A.2, 5-28-86); 4.14: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the city limits.  (Ord. No. 03-OR376-1, § 1, 6-4-03)

Ojai 5-4.601 et seq.: Any person possessing a Great Ape within the city limits must adhere to local rules and regulations governing the possession of those animals. (§ 2, Ord. 422, eff. April 23, 1971)

Orange 6.04.070 et seq.: It is illegal to keep or maintain any Great Ape within the city limits. The ban does not apply to zoos, museums, veterinary hospitals and educational institutions. (Ords. 4-87; 1-84; 48-71; Prior Code 4121.1)

Orange County 4-1-94 et seq.: A county-issued license is required to have, keep, or maintain Great Apes. Licensees are subject to county ordinances regulating the possession of the animals. (Ord. No. 2836, § 7, 5-6-75; Ord. No. 2908, § 1, 5-4-76)

Orinda 6.04.010, 6.24.010 et seq.: Any person possessing a Great Ape within the city limits must register the animal with the Animal Services Director. (CCCC § 416-11.002) Museums, educational facilities and scientific research institutions are exempt from the registration requirement. (CCCC § 416-11.010); 6.32.060: “No performing animal exhibition or circus shall induce or encourage animals to perform through the use of chemical, mechanical, electrical or manual devices in a manner which will cause, or is likely to cause, physical injury or suffering to the animal.” (CCCC § 416-12.602)

Oroville 4-40.101 et seq.: It is illegal to own, harbor, or keep a Great Ape within the city limits. The ban does not apply to zoos, circuses, performing animal exhibitions, or licensed handlers/keepers. (Ord. 1590, § 1 (part))

Paradise 6.24.010 et seq.: A local permit is required to own or possess a Great Ape within the town limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. 123 §1(part), 1984: Ord. 57 §8(A), 1982)

Pasadena 6.40.030 et seq.: It is illegal to display Great Apes on any public property within the city limits.

Pomona 6-4: A local permit is required to keep, maintain, or permit a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. No. 4017, § 1, 12-13-2004)

Portola 6.08.060: A local permit is required to keep or maintain a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. (Ord. 261 (part), 1996)

Rancho Cucamonga 17.08.030: A “conditional use” permit is required to keep Great Apes in residential zones.

Rancho Palos Verdes 17.76.110: A local permit is required to keep Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. 320 § 7 (part), 1997)

Rancho Santa Margarita 5.12.500: A local license is required to have, keep, or maintain any exotic animal within the city limits. (Ord. No. 06-05, § 1, 6-14-2006)

Redding 7.04.100: It is illegal to keep Great Apes within the city limits. The ban does not apply to zoos, museums, circuses, licensed educational facilities, veterinary hospitals and rehabilitation centers, and federal agencies responsible for regulating wild animals. (Ord. 2354 § 1 (part), 2005)

Redwood City 5.3: It is illegal to keep Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. No. 1922, § 2, 10-14-1985)

Rocklin 6.40.10 et seq.: It is illegal to keep Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. 483 § 11.1, 1982) The ban does not apply to certain research and educational facilities, veterinary hospitals, zoos, animal dealers, and exhibitors. (Ord. 483 § 11.2, 1982)

Rohnert Park 6.16.050: It is illegal to display Great Apes within the city limits. The ban does not apply to display of the animals by institutions that are accredited by the American Zoological Association or by the Association of Sanctuaries. (Ord. 738 § 1 (part), 2005)

Rosemead 6.04.40, 6.04.80: It is illegal to allow any ape to run at large within the city limits, and such animals must be chained, or otherwise attached to a competent person, while in the streets and other public places. (Ord. No. 884, § 1, 11-17-09)

San Buenaventura 24.200 et seq.: Great Apes are not allowed in any zone of the city, with a narrow exception for mixed-use and industrial zones, where such possession is in conjunction with the “Animal Sales and Services: Grooming and Pet Stores” use type; 8.50.710 et seq.: Possession of Great Apes within the city limits is generally discouraged and is subject to local regulation. (Code 1971, § 4481 et seq.)

San Clemente 6.32.010 et seq: A local permit is required to keep or maintain any Great Ape within the city limits. (Ord. 1163 § 66, 1995: prior code § 17-80)

San Diego County 62.681 et seq.: The county places several restrictions on the possession of Great Apes, including “[k]eep[ing] the animal[s] in a manner that will not threaten or annoy any person of normal sensitivity.” The owner or possessor of any ape that is kept in violation of the county code is liable to the county for all costs related to enforcement of the relevant provisions. A partial exemption exists for zoos, circuses, and research and educational facilities. (Ord. No. 10036 (N.S.), effective 2-26-10)

San Francisco Health Code 1:50 et seq.: It is illegal to sell, offer for sale, have, keep, maintain, or possess a Great Ape within the city and county limits. The ban does not apply to zoos, circuses, museums, educational institutions, veterinary hospitals, the public pound, or film and video productions. However, any authorized use must comply with local regulations. (Ord. 81-78, App. 2/10/78)

San Joaquin County 9.3 et seq.: Exotic animals are not allowed in any residential zone in the county.

San Juan Capistrano 6-1.01: A local license is required to have, keep, or maintain Great Apes. Licensees are subject to local ordinances governing the possession of the animals. (Orange County Ord. No. 2836, § 7, 5-6-75; Ord. No. 2908, § 1, 5-4-76)

San Mateo County 6.08.020 et seq.: A local “Health System” permit is required to own or keep a Great Ape within the county limits. Permittees must comply with local regulations governing the possession of such animals. The permit requirement does not apply to certain research facilities, veterinary hospitals, and animal dealers. (Prior code § 3331.3; Ord. 2522, 07/18/78; Ord. 4405, 01/08/08; Ord. 4438, 09/09/08)

San Rafael 6.10.010: It is illegal to possess Great Apes in any residential zone for any length of time. (Marin County Ord. 3476 § 1 (part), 2007: Ord. 3377 § 1 (part), 2003); Marin County Ordinance 8.04.230 et seq. Live animal performances involving Great Apes are regulated, but not prohibited. (Ord. 3476 § 1 (part), 2007: Ord. 3377 § 1 (part), 2003)

San Ramon B2-62 et seq.: Anyone wishing to possess an ape within the county must register the animal with animal services. Properly permitted museums, research facilities, and educational institutions are exempt from the registration requirement. (Ord. 230 § 2 (Exh. A) (part), 1992)

Sanger 10-3: It is illegal to import, maintain, offer for sale, or give away any ape within the city limits. Zoos and circuses are exempt from the prohibition unless their acts or omissions involving apes pose a public health and welfare hazard. (Code 1960, § 3.9; Ord. No. 896, § 6(18), 10-7-93)

Santa Ana 5-8.5: It is illegal for circuses, carnivals, and similar enterprises to keep or display Great Apes within the city limits. The ban does not apply to zoos and museums. (Ord. No. NS-2669, § 4, 10-4-04)

Saratoga 7-20.060: No person shall have, keep, maintain, sell, trade or let for hire any wild, exotic, dangerous or nondomestic animal without first receiving special authorization from the City Manager or the Health Officer. The authorization requirement does not apply to licensed circuses, zoos, or other wild animal collections. (Ord. 71-136 § 1 (part), 1994)

Scotts Valley 6.16.130: It is illegal to possess, keep, or have custody of any Great Ape within the city limits. Individuals that had valid state permits to possess such animals when the ordinance was enacted are grandfathered in for as long as the state permit remains valid and current. (Ord. 86.2 § 1 (part), 1987)

Shafter 6.100.10: It is illegal to keep Great Apes within the city limits. (Ord. 606 § 1 (part), 2007)

Simi Valley 6-1.701: A local license is required to own, harbor, or keep any wild animal within the city limits. (Ventura County En. Ord. 3390—8/15/78) Licensees must comply with local ordinances governing the possession of such animals. (§ 2, Ord. 482, eff. August 26, 1981)

Soledad 6.20.060: A local permit is required to keep or maintain a Great Ape within the city limits. (Prior code § 3-19)

Sonoma County 5-6: Rather enigmatically, Sonoma County includes Great Apes in both the code’s definition of “exotic animal” and “pet animal,” notwithstanding the statewide ban on possession of such animals as pets. (Ord. No. 5664 § 1(b), 2006: Ord. No. 4782 § 1, 1994; Ord. No. 4653 § 2(a—e), 1993; Ord. No. 4449 § 2, 1991.) ; 5-118: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the county limits. (Ord. No. 4782 § 16, 1994.)

Tehama 6.08.050: A local permit is required to keep, maintain, or feed any animals other than dogs, cats, and household pets, which includes Great Apes. (Ord. 145 § 6, 1994)

Tehama County 7.04.050: Rather enigmatically, Tehama County includes Great Apes in both the code’s definition of “exotic animal” and “pet animal,” notwithstanding the statewide ban on possession of such animals as pets. (Ord. 1875 § 5, 2006); 7.25.070: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the county limits. (Ord. 1633 § 8(part), 1994)

Tiburon 20-2.182 et seq.: It is illegal to possess Great Apes in any residential zone for any length of time. (Ord. No. 505 N.S., § 2 (part)); 20-2.230: Tiburon regulates, but does not prohibit, live animal performances involving Great Apes. (Ord. No. 505 N.S., § 2 (part))

Torrance 41.1.4: It is illegal to harbor or keep any wild animal within the city limits. An exception exists for possession of such animals for exhibition purposes, with written permission from local authorities, and subject to compliance with relevant ordinances.

Tustin 4223: It is illegal to keep or maintain any wild animal within the city limits. The ban does not apply to zoos, veterinary hospitals, educational institutions, and permitted entertainment facilities. (Ord. No. 826, Sec. 1, 5-19-80)

Vallejo 7.12.140: Anyone wishing to possess an ape within the city limits must register the animal. (Ord. 536 N.C. (2d) § 2, 1980)

Ventura County 4.07.4480 et seq.: A county-issued license is required to own, harbor, or keep any wild animal within the county limits. (En. Ord. 3390—8/15/78)

West Covina 6-2 et seq.: It is illegal to keep, possess, maintain, raise, harbor, liberate, or sell any Great Ape within the city limits. The ban does not apply to circuses or permitted temporary animal exhibits. (Code 1960, § 4300; Ord. No. 1917, § 2, 4-20-93; Ord. No. 2060, § 3, 10-3-00)

Williams 6.44.010 et seq.: It is illegal to keep a Great Ape within the city limits. The ban does not apply to certain educational and research institutions, veterinary hospitals, zoos, and permitted circuses and live animal entertainment events. (Ord. 154-07 § 3(part), 2007)

Willits 6.10.010: A permit is required to keep, have, maintain, sell, trade, or let for hire a Great Ape within the city limits. Permittees must comply with permit conditions and requirements.  (Mendocino County Ord. No. 4058 (part), adopted 2000.)

Windsor 3-4-1035: It is illegal to allow a Great Ape to run at large within the city limits. (Ord. No. 92-22 § 2 (part); amended and renumbered by Ord. No. 98-107 § 13)

Woodlake 6.08.060: It is illegal to “keep or maintain” any wild animal within the city limits. (Ord. 298 § 6, 1975)

Yorba Linda 6.20.010 et seq.: A license is required to have, keep, or maintain any wild or exotic animal within the city limits. Licensees must comply with license conditions and requirements.  (Prior code § 4-25); 18.20.640: Wild and exotic animals are prohibited in all residential zones. (Ord. 2004-884, 2004)

 


 

[3] Cal. Penal Code § 597; Cal. Penal Code § 599b; But see, Cal. Penal Code § 599c (discussing the exemption from the state’s anti-cruelty laws for apes used in scientific experiments).

[5] Cal. Penal Code § 597; See also, discussion infra Section IV (listing the local ordinances that make it illegal for any animal exhibition or circus to induce an ape, or any other animal, to perform using chemical, mechanical, electrical, or manual devices in a manner which will, or is likely to, hurt or injure the animal).

[8] Cal. Penal Code § 837. In addition, any private citizen can arrest a person that has committed a felony, even if the offense was not committed in the citizen’s presence, as long as he or she has reasonable cause to believe that the person being arrested committed the felony. Id; See also, Cal. Penal Code § 847 (discussing the procedure that a private citizen must follow after arresting a person without a warrant).

[9] Cal. Penal Code § 599a. Any such arrest warrant is then executed by any law enforcement officer or officer of a qualified incorporated association. Id.

[10] Cal. Penal Code § 597; This mandatory forfeiture provision does not apply to Great Apes that are used in scientific experiments. Id.

[11] The term “motion picture” does not include motion pictures made for scientific, research, or educational purposes, or motion pictures exhibited as home movies, or amateur films, which are shown free or at cost to friends, neighbors or civic groups. Cal. Civ. Code § 3504; See also, Cal. Civ. Code § 3508 (discussing exceptions to the prohibition).

[13] Cal. Civ. Code § 3505; A violation of such an injunction is punishable as a contempt of court, and may incur a minimum fine of two hundred dollars ($200) and a maximum fine of one thousand dollars ($1000). Cal. Civ. Code § 3507.3.

[17] Cal. Health & Safety Code § 25989.1; Any violation of the notice and schedule requirements is punishable by a minimum fine of five hundred dollars ($500) and a maximum fine of two thousand dollars ($2000). Subsequent violations are punishable by a minimum fine of one thousand five hundred dollars ($1,500) and a maximum fine of five thousand dollars ($5,000). Id.

[18] Office of Inspector General, U.S. Dept. of Agriculture, Controls Over APHIS Licensing of Animal Exhibitors, 2010 Audit Report 33601-10-Ch, available at http://www.usda.gov/oig/webdocs/33601-10-CH.pdf (last visited Aug. 13, 2010).

[22] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2120.  The Commission must work in cooperation with the Department of Food and Agriculture to adopt regulations governing the import and possession of wild animals. Id; Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2122.

[23] “Person” means any natural person or any partnership, corporation, limited liability company, trust, or other type of association. Cal. Fish & Game Code § 67.

[24] Cal. Fish & Game Code §§ 2118, 2150, 2155; Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671; Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; See also, Cal. Fish & Game Code §§ 2118 (discussing restrictions on the importation of “nonnative wild animals”).

[26] The fees for permit applications, permits, and facility inspections must be set in an amount that is sufficient to cover the Department’s costs of administering, implementing, and enforcing the permit program. Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150.2.

[27] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150; See also, Cal. Fish & Game Code §§ 2119, 2123 (outlining the responsibilities of the two agencies regarding the issuance of publicly available materials on restricted wild animals).

[28] See, Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2153 (setting forth the distribution requirements for copies of the permits upon issuance).

[30] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2185; An “enforcing officer” is either (1) an enforcement officer of the Department; (2) a state plant quarantine officer; or (3) a county agricultural commissioner. Id.

[31] Permits are valid for one year. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1.

[32] However, persons or facilities accredited by the American Association of Zoological Parks and Aquariums (AZA), universities, colleges, governmental research agencies or other bona fide scientific institutions engaging in scientific or public health research are exempt from  the permit requirements. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; Businesses may qualify for a permit by employing at least one full time employee that possesses the requirements for obtaining a permit. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1.

[37] See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1 (discussing additional permit requirements); See also, Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2190 (discussing certain notification requirements for permittees, such as reporting escapes, acquisitions, transfers, and deaths of animals).

[38] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2582; The penalty for the unlawful failure or refusal to maintain records or paperwork required by the code or regulations for the payment of taxes, fees, charges, or for export, import, possession, receipt or transport is up to $l,000.00 for each individual Great Ape. The penalty under this Section cumulatively shall not exceed $10,000.00 for acts or conduct taking place within a 24-hour period. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 747. See also, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 748 (discussing the procedural requirements for imposing such civil penalties).

[39] In addition to all other legal requirements, all permittees must uniquely identify all Great Apes, and report such identification to the Department for inclusion within the Department’s inventory of restricted wild animals. Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2157.

[40] Permitted facilities may legally deviate from the minimum standards of care when specifically directed to do so in writing by a licensed veterinarian. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.2.

[41] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.2. See also, Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2582 (making it illegal to import, transport, possess, or transfer possession of any Great Ape for the purposes of maiming, injuring, or killing the animal for gain, amusement, or sport).

[43] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.2; The regulation permits the humane destruction of a Great Ape in lieu of veterinary care. Id.

[46] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.3. The following minimum caging and facility standards apply to all permanent facilities housing Great Apes: 

SAFETY FEATURES, ENCLOSURES

All cages or enclosures must be completely enclosed with double doors, or if cages do not have double doors, then a perimeter fence must enclose the entire facility.

SAFETY FEATURES, ANIMAL WELFARE

All Great Apes must be provided with natural or artificial sunlight. Only compatible animals may be housed together. There must be an artificial heat source if temperatures fall below that necessary for the health of the animals. All enclosures must have sufficient drainage to prevent standing water.

SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION STANDARDS FOR CHIMPANZEES, GORILLAS, AND ORANGUTANS

Materials: The walls and top of the cage: Either (A) 6-inch reinforced concrete; or (B) 8-inch reinforced concrete block; or (C) 5/8-inch diameter steel bars spaced on not greater than 4-inch centers and welded to horizontal angle iron bars 1-1/4 inches x 1/4-inch thick which are spaced no greater than 3 feet apart; or (D) 6-gauge chain link or welded wire attached to 1-5/8-inch schedule 40 steel pipe spaced on 5-foot centers with vertical bracing of 1-5/8-inch schedule 40 steel pipe spaced on 4-foot centers. The horizontal angle iron bars shall be welded to the corner posts. The bottom horizontal bar shall be no more than 3 inches above a concrete floor or footing. Welded wire shall be welded to the framework every foot. Chain link fencing shall be secured along all edges to the framework using tension bars which shall be bolted, not welded, to the framework at 12 inch intervals. All bolt attachments shall be further secured by spot welding. Walls shall be secured to a concrete footing deep enough below grade to preclude escape by digging. The framework for the walls and top of the cage shall be made of 1-5/8 inch outside diameter structural weight galvanized steel pipe or equivalent. Vertical support shall be set 2-1/2 feet in concrete.

Corner posts: Either: (A) one 2-3/8 inch steel pipe; or (B) two 1-5/8 inch schedule 40 steel pipes bolted together with 3/8 inch steel bolts or equivalent.

Minimum Floor Space: (A) Gorillas: 1 animal = 300 square feet; 2 animals = 500 square feet; each additional animal = add 200 square feet; (B) Chimpanzees: 1 animal = 200 square feet; 2 animals = 300 square feet; each additional animal = add 100 square feet; (C) Orangutans: 1 animal = 200 square feet; 2 animals = 400 square feet; each additional animal = add 200 square feet.

Minimum Height: (A) Gorillas: 8 feet; (B) Chimpanzees: 8 feet; (C) Orangutans: 10 feet.

Other: A shelter or den box must be provided. Cages must have raised perches and roost sites.

SPECIAL CONSTRUCTION STANDARDS FOR GIBBONS

Materials: Cages must be constructed with 9 gauge chain link or welded wire or equivalent.

Minimum Floor Space: 1 animal = 100 square feet; 2 animals = 200 square feet; each additional animal = add 50 square feet.

Minimum Height: 9 feet.

Other: A shelter or den box must be provided. Cages must have raised perches that must be above the floor at a height that is at least equivalent to twice the length of an adult.

MANDATORY ENVIRONMENTAL ENRICHMENT ELEMENTS

Such environmental enrichment items include: objects or exercise systems appropriate to the age and species to promote physical and psychological well-being, such as ropes, bars, branches, chains, and rings.

ADDITIONAL REQUIREMENTS

In addition to the facility and caging standards listed above, all permittees must comply with the requirements of the Federal Animal Welfare Regulations contained in 9 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), Sections 2.33; 2.40; 3.75-3.85; 3.101(a)(3); and 3.136-3.142 and the “Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals,” (NIH Publication No. 86-23, Revised 1985).

EXCEPTIONS TO MINIMUM CAGING REQUIREMENTS, RESEARCH ANIMALS

Subject to Department approval, facilities that possess Great Apes for research purposes do not need to comply with the aforementioned facility and caging standards. Rather such animals may be confined pursuant to the provisions of the “Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals” adopted by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (NIH Publication No. 86-23, Revised 1985).

[47] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.2. Large natural habitat enclosures do not need to have excrement removed daily, rather it must be removed as often as necessary to maintain animals in a healthy condition. Id.

[48] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2117. If an animal is either diseased or is not being maintained pursuant to the minimum standards of care, an enforcing officer may order either: (1) the transfer of an animal to a new owner, or (2) correction of the conditions that constitute a violation. If neither a transfer of the animal or improvement of the conditions is accomplished, the officer may order destruction of the animal. Id.

[49] The Department may enter any facility at any reasonable hour to conduct inspections. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; The Department has the option to contract with “eligible local entities,” to conduct inspections on behalf of the Department. Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150.4.

[55] See generally, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 746 (discussing the Commission’s procedures for permit suspensions and revocations).

[56] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2125; Each violation of the Fish and Game Code or the regulations promulgated thereunder is subject to a minimum civil fine of five hundred dollars ($500) and a maximum fine of ten thousand dollars ($10,000). A criminal conviction for violation of the aforementioned provisions is punishable by imprisonment for up to six months and/or a maximum fine of one thousand dollars ($1,000); Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1.

[57] “Interstate transport” includes unlawfully engaging in any of the following: exporting, importing, transporting, selling, possessing, receiving, acquiring, purchasing, or unlawfully assisting, conspiring, or aiding in the importing, exporting, transporting, selling, possessing, receiving, acquiring, or purchasing of any Great Ape for” profit or personal gain.” Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2582; Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 747; See also, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 748 (discussing the procedural requirements for imposing such civil penalties).

[58] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 747; Subject to certain exceptions, the amount of the civil penalty per violation is determined  based upon the following formula: the fair market value of the ape involved, plus an additional $400 - $5,000. Id; See also, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 748 (discussing the procedural requirements for imposing such civil penalties).

[59] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 747; Each improperly labeled container is subject to a $1,000 fine, up to a maximum $10,000 fine for acts or conduct taking place within a 24-hour period. Id.

[62] See, Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121795 (authorizing CDPH to adopt regulations governing the import, quarantine, and release from quarantine of all wild animals imported into the state); See also, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30086 (discussing CDPH’s authority to grant variances from any requirements contained within the agency’s regulations).

[63] See, Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121830 (enumerating mandatory contents of a permit application).

[64] Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121845; See also, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30076 (discussing permit application fees).

[66] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30080; Quarantine facilities used to house imported animals must be maintained and operated in conformance with standards prescribed in the California Code of Regulations, Sections 30070 through 30086; in Title 42 of the Code of Federal Regulations, Section 71.53; and in “Biosafety in Microbiological and Biomedical Laboratories,” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Centers for Disease Control and National Institutes of Health, 2nd edition, 1988. Approved facilities are subject to CDPH inspection at any time, normally during but not restricted to working hours. Id.

[68] See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 §§ 30077-30079 (detailing minimum standards of housing and care for animals maintained in, and transported to and from, quarantine facilities).

[71] See, Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121835 (listing requisite contents of agency-issued import permits).

[72] See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 §§ 30073.1- 30073.2 (setting mandatory time frames for processing of permit applications).

[74] See, Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121850 (discussing notification and holding requirements upon entry).

[75] But seeCal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30074.1 (enumerating special classes of permits that may be issued without the quarantine). See also, discussion infra Section 3 (scenarios which qualify for such special import permits are highlighted).

[76] See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30081.1 (discussing acceptable methods of tuberculin testing).

[78] See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 §§ 30082-30084 (discussing record-keeping and animal identification requirements).

[79] Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121780; Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30081; But see, Cal. Health & Safety Code § 121855 (Animals that do not pass the initial inspection or the subsequent health examinations may either be killed, quarantined for an extended period, or returned to the point of origin.).

[81] Cal. Health & Safety Code §§ 121780, 121785.

[85] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150.5; See, Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1 (discussing requirements and fees for an “animal care” permit and activities that are authorized under such permits).

[90] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30081.

[95] In fact, the statutes require every provision of the chapter to be “liberally construed…to protect the interests of all animals affected.” Cal. Health & Safety Code § 1651.

[96] California Laboratory Animal Use Approval Program: State of California Requirements to Keep and Use Laboratory Animals (July 1, 2009), available at http://www.cdph.ca.gov/programs/LabAnimalUse/Pages/LaboratoryAnimalUseApprovalProgram.aspx (last visited Dec. 19, 2010); Both the Laboratory Animal Use Program and the exemptions were enacted in 1951, prior to the enactment of the Federal Animal Welfare Act; therefore it is inconceivable that the state legislature intended to exempt all federally (USDA) regulated facilities when it enacted this law. It is unclear how CDPH justifies its interpretation and application of this law to exclude all federally regulated facilities. 

[98] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30074.1; Captive born and raised nonhuman primates may be imported for nonresident temporary exhibition purposes, pursuant to a “short-term exhibition permit” issued by CDPH, which allows the permittee to forego the agency’s quarantine requirements. In order to qualify for such permits, applicants must provide CDPH with the following documents: (1) a health history of the animal(s); (2) proof that the animal(s) are captive born and raised; (3) a veterinary health certificate for each animal; and (4) a plan describing how the animal(s) will be prevented from having direct physical contact with the public (except during exhibition); (5) proof of a recently administered negative tuberculin test, if animals will have direct physical contact with the public; and (6) a copy of the applicants exhibition itinerary. Id.

[99] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30074.1; Entities that are accredited by the American Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA) may apply for a “zoological exhibition permit” issued by CDPH, which allows the permittee to forego the agency’s quarantine requirements. In order to qualify for a permit, applicants must provide CDPH with the following documents: (1) proof that the Great Ape(s) are captive born and have been in the possession of the consignee for at least 180 days prior to importation; (2) proof that the consignee is an AZA-accredited facility; (3) a veterinary health certificate for each animal; (4) proof of a recently administered negative tuberculin test for each animal; and (5) a copy of the applicants exhibition itinerary. Great Apes that are imported pursuant to a “zoological exhibition permit” must be kept in isolation for at least the first 30 days within the state, and are subject to certain testing and veterinary examination requirements during the mandatory isolation period. Id.

[100] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 17 § 30074.1; Great Apes that are used for breeding purposes, “as part of a recognized animal colony established for experimental breeding of animals in captivity,” may be imported for this purpose upon issuance of a fee exempt permit, subject to compliance with the conditions specified in the permit. Such permits are temporary and permitted animals may not be sold, traded, or given away during the permit period without prior approval by CDPH. Id.

[101] AZA accredited zoos are exempt from all Fish and Game permit requirements. Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150.

[105] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; Nonresident dealers may only transport animals either between two permittees or between AZA accredited institutions and permittees, or ship the animals out of state. Id.

[106] Cal. Fish & Game Code § 2150; However such entities must still comply with the requirements of subdivision (a) of Section 2193 of the Fish and Game Code, which mandate that they report all escapes, acquisitions, transfers, and deaths of apes. Id. California-based zoos that are not accredited by the AZA may apply to the Department for a waiver of certain permit conditions, and the Department may approve or deny such requests for “justified reasons.” The statute does not elaborate on which reasons are considered “justified reasons.” Id.

[109] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4; See, supra note 43 and accompanying text regarding minimum permanent housing requirements.

[110] Id.

[111] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4; This provision is contingent upon certification by a permittee’s veterinarian that such transport cages provide “sufficient space” for the animal. Id.

[112] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; The invoice must contain: (1) the name and address of the broker/dealer; (2) a phone number where the broker/dealer and the consignee can be reached at all times; (3) the name and address of the consignee; (4) the date of shipment; and (5) the number and scientific name of each animal. Id.

[113] Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1; An additional 48 hours may be approved by an enforcing officer or USDA accredited veterinarian. Id.

[115] Id.

[116] Cages must be strong enough to contain the animal and withstand the “normal rigors of transportation.” Cage interiors must be (1) free from protrusions that could injure an animal; and (2) lined with nontoxic litter in sufficient quantity to absorb and cover excrement. Cage bottoms must be solid to prevent leakage in shipment. The exterior of the cages must have handles or “other devices” to enable lifting of the cage without tilting and without contact with the animal. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[117] Apes may not be transported within any space that has an ambient air temperature below 45 degrees F, unless an accredited veterinarian signs a statement certifying that the animal is acclimated to such temperatures. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[118] Animal shipments may not be commingled with inanimate cargo. Live animals must not be transported with any material, substance, or device which may compromise their health or well-being, unless “precautions” are taken to prevent injury. The regulations are silent on what those “precautions” are. Incompatible animals may not be housed in the same cage, nor may juveniles be caged with any animal other than their mother. Animals that are socially dependent upon each other must be allowed visual and olfactory contact during transportation. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[119] All animals in holding areas must have access to fresh air that is of a temperature that is “compatible with the health and comfort of the animal,” and that is regulated to protect animals from temperature extremes. Animals may not be placed in a direct draft. Animal cargo space must have sufficient air for normal breathing and be free of direct engine exhaust fumes and gasses. Animal cages must be ventilated pursuant to very specific standards enumerated within the regulations. Animal holding areas and cargo spaces must be cleaned and sanitized often enough to prevent accumulation of “debris or excreta,” and to prevent “disease hazard[s]” and “minimize vermin infestation[s].” Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[120] Upon arrival at a final destination, carriers must attempt to notify consignees at least every 2 hours, and must keep detailed records of such attempts. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[121] Transport cages may not be tossed, dropped, needlessly tilted, stacked in a manner that may result in their falling, or otherwise handled in a manner that may cause physical or emotional trauma to the animals therein. Apes should not be removed from their cages, except in an emergency, and the openings of the cages must be easily accessible for emergency removals. Animals must be offered potable water within the 4 hours prior to departure and again every 12 hours during transportation. Food must be offered at least once in each 24-hour period. Drivers must visually observe the animals every 4 hours and air traffic personnel must observe the animals “whenever the cargo space is accessible.” Animals in distress must receive veterinary attention as soon as possible. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[122] Animals must be loaded and unloaded “as expeditiously as possible,” and animals that are kept in holding areas must be sheltered from direct sunlight, rain and snow, and must be protected from exposure to extreme temperatures. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.

[123] Transport cages consigned to carriers and intermediate handlers must be clearly marked on top and on all sides with the words “Live Wild Animal” in letters not less than 1 inch in height, and with arrows or other markings to indicate the correct upright position of the container. Required documents, including written care instructions for carriers and intermediate handlers, must be attached in an accessible location on the outside of the transport cages. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.4.  

[125] Id.

[127] Id.

[128] The Department may authorize a permittee to import a Great Ape upon written verification that there were no appropriate facilities located out-of-state that were able to house the animal, and absent placement with the permittee, the animal would be euthanized. Cal. Code Regs. tit. 14 § 671.1.

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