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No pet rhinos or zebras allowed in Michigan village

April 23, 2009 |  5:50 pm

White rhino calf.In response to concerns raised by residents about a pet alligator seen in a neighbors yard, the Village Council in Manchester, Mich., voted unanimously to ban having certain animals as pets.

The new ordinance passed earlier this week prohibits the keeping of about 100 species of animals. Interestingly, those banned include not only domestic farm animals such as ducks but also exotics such as snow leopards, baboons, cheetahs, rhinoceroses and zebras.

There was no statute in place regarding ownership of exotic or wild animals, so Village Manager Jeff Wallace was tapped to put one together.

Using portions of ordinances from other municipalities in the state, Wallace compiled a decree "to promote public health, safety, comfort and general welfare of the community by banning the owning or keeping of certain animals."

The regulation will go into effect within 45 days, after which owners of such exotic animals will risk fines of $1,000 if they do not remove them from their properties.

I guess there's no wanting a hippopotamus for Christmas in this town.

--Kelly Burgess

Photo: White rhino calf. Credit: Martin Harvey

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