Pet and Aquarium Owners

There are a variety of exotic plants, reptiles and fish you can choose from for your water garden, aquarium or terrarium. If these animals and plants are released into the “wild” there is the possibility that they will thrive in their new environment, drastically changing and disturbing the natural web of life.

Don’t Let it Loose! Releasing a pet you can no longer care for into the “wild” will disturb the natural web of life.

How can YOU help

  • When shopping for a new pet learn the animal’s life cycle and needs to ensure that you are committed to their care over the long-term
  • Don’t Let it Loose: do not release your unwanted exotic pets or plants into the wild or discard of your aquarium and water garden debris into lakes, streams, rivers or storm drains
  • Use these resources to learn how to avoid negatively impacting natural waterways and aquatic ecosystems – these tips are useful for aquarium owners and water gardeners in all areas.
  • If you can no longer care for your pet, contact the place you purchased it to see if it can be returned, or see if the animal can be used for educational purposes by contacting science centres, zoos, aquariums or schools
  • Try to re-home your pet
  • If all else fails then euthanize the animal in a humane manner – this choice may be difficult but it is a better option then letting them loose.  Animals that are released into an environment that they are unaccustomed to have a high chance of being eaten by predators, hit by vehicles or starving to death. Those that do survive can have negative environmental impacts
  • Dispose of your aquatic plant by drying and freezing them and then add it to non-compost garbage

The Turtle Embassy

A refuge for displaced invasive turtles species to receive medical care, rehab and relocation to certified containment spaces.
tel: 604-616-3971

B.C. Species of Concern

The following exotic pets and plants have been “let loose” into the wild and are now considered invasive species. These well established species are having negative impacts on native plants and animals.

Red Eared Slider

  • Red Eared Slider Turtles
  • European Cottontail Rabbit
  • American Bullfrog
  • Round Goby
  • Rusty Crayfish
  • Parrot’s Feather
  • Yellow Flag Iris


Don’t Let It Loose Resources

Don't Let it Loose