Can I purchase a tortoise online while living in North Carolina?

Lydia_Rose

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Hi, I was wondering if anyone could give me info on if it's legal or not to purchase a tortoise online while living in North Carolina. I know that the turtle law states you can only own 4 turtles at one time, and that you can not legally sell or buy native turtles when residing in North Carolina. I also am aware of the 4' inch law. However, I was wondering if purchasing a tortoise online is legal, for the company that would ship it to me does not reside in North Carolina and the tortoise I am wanting to purchase is not native to North Carolina, nor do I own any turtles or tortoises at this time. Thanks for your help!
 
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Maggie Cummings

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Are you confusing the law that you can't sell a turtle smaller than 4 inches? I know many people who live in NC and they have large tortoise collections....
 

Lydia_Rose

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Are you confusing the law that you can't sell a turtle smaller than 4 inches? I know many people who live in NC and they have large tortoise collections....
No, I am aware of that law, but thank you :) I've just heard that there is a law that states you can't buy or sell turtles/tortoises in NC, but I was wondering if it would be legal if I purchased online from someone in a different state
 

Yvonne G

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I'm not up on North Carolina laws, however, usually it refers to tortoises native to your state. I would think it's ok to purchase exotic tortoises from out of state.
 

jaizei

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This is the law:

http://www.ncparc.org/WG-PTR/FAQ about SB285.pdf

I have a hard time making my mind read this kind of writing, so I just skimmed the article, but it looks like it's talking about reptiles native to SC

From page four:

Are there other rules and law that apply to these turtles?

The Lacy Act still applies for interstate transport of wildlife. The USDA prohibits the sale of turtles under 4 inches, and
state health laws prohibit the sale of turtles as pets. Enforcement officers with the Commission do not enforce the USDA or state health laws, however. Also, the possibility of out-of-state turtle collectors who may be subject to rules and laws in their respective states of residences and in states through which they transport turtles must be considered.

That law is below (link)

10A NCAC 41A .0302 SALE OF TURTLES RESTRICTED
(a) Purpose of this Regulation. This Regulation is adopted to prevent the spread of salmonellosis from pet turtles to humans.
(b) Sale of Turtles Prohibited. No turtle shall be sold, offered for sale, or bartered by any retail or wholesale establishment in North Carolina.
(c) Sale of Turtles for Scientific, Educational, or Food Purposes Exempted. Subsection (b) of this Regulation does not apply to the sale of turtles to institutions for scientific or educational purposes nor to the sale of turtles for food purposes.
(d) Sale of Turtles Outside North Carolina Exempted. Notwithstanding the provisions of Subsection (b) of this Regulation, wholesale establishments in North Carolina dealing in the sale of turtles shall not be prohibited from selling turtles to other wholesale or retail establishments outside the State of North Carolina.
(e) Determination of Compliance. Authorized agents of the Department of Environment, Health, and Natural Resources and local health departments shall have authority to enter any retail or wholesale establishment at all times to determine compliance with this Regulation.
 
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Maggie Cummings

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That's a lot a crap. I'll call my friend with the sanctuary and see if she has any up for adoption....
 

Linhdan Nguyen

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are turtles and tortoises considered the same ? Im the type of person to be like "well the law says turtles, nothing about tortoises, therefore i may buy or sell a TORTOISE because it is NOT a turtle, therefore not against the law."

But dont follow my footsteps. It only works with school (sometimes), and work, and arguing with my boyfriend or the cell phone company.
 

jaizei

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are turtles and tortoises considered the same ? Im the type of person to be like "well the law says turtles, nothing about tortoises, therefore i may buy or sell a TORTOISE because it is NOT a turtle, therefore not against the law."

But dont follow my footsteps. It only works with school (sometimes), and work, and arguing with my boyfriend or the cell phone company.

A tortoise is a land dwelling turtle.
 

Rue

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Yes. All tortoises are turtles. Not all turtles are tortoises though.
 

jaizei

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Hi, I was wondering if anyone could give me info on if it's legal or not to purchase a tortoise online while living in North Carolina. I know that the turtle law states you can only own 4 turtles at one time, and that you can not legally sell or buy native turtles when residing in North Carolina. I also am aware of the 4' inch law. However, I was wondering if purchasing a tortoise online is legal, for the company that would ship it to me does not reside in North Carolina and the tortoise I am wanting to purchase is not native to North Carolina, nor do I own any turtles or tortoises at this time. Thanks for your help!

I don't know that there's a direct answer when talking about online sellers, especially from out of state. The law I quoted above pertains to the act of selling (like the 4" law), not buying. So even if it were against the law for an out of state seller to ship into NC, I don't know that the buyer would bear any responsibility.
 

Lydia_Rose

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Thanks guys! Sorry for not replying sooner, I've had my wisdom teeth removed and have been under the weather. But I appreciate all your help, you guys have been very informative :)
 

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