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  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran JRLongton's Avatar
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    USARK - should I join?

    You can't spend much time around this hobby without encountering reference to USARK. And as time goes on, I find myself taking on the privilege of caring for more animals and growing more committed to the hobby, and I've started to wonder if joining USARK is something that makes sense.

    Of course, I don't need to join. But I've read their website and find that I'm in broad agreement with their platform, and I do realize that there's a legislative threat to the hobby from misguided, though well-meaning, persons and groups. So I do see the need for an advocacy organization.

    That said, I'm curious about the community's overall opinion about USARK. Is this an organization that does real and tangible good for the hobby? Or is it just something that sells "memberships" and mails out some cheap-o "newsletter" once or twice a year? Its a little hard to tell and some aspects of their website seem to have not been updated in years.

    Of course I appreciate and comments and thank everyone for their time in responding.
    Last edited by JRLongton; 04-23-2019 at 02:52 PM.
    \m/

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  3. #2
    Registered User Bogertophis's Avatar
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    I've wondered the same thing, though I'd lean well in favor of joining even though I haven't as of yet. If for no other reason than they call attention to
    legal changes & challenges as related to keeping & breeding snakes+++ and this HAS to be a good thing. It's a bit like a union that goes to bat for its
    members that cannot fight the fight alone, and it's a non-profit too. I have a feeling we should all join...but like you, I welcome more input.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 04-23-2019 at 03:40 PM.

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  5. #3
    BPnet Veteran Craiga 01453's Avatar
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    I have thought about it as well. I'd love to hear more from people who are or were USARK members.

    Great question!!!!
    ...life is beautiful...

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  7. #4
    BPnet Senior Member AbsoluteApril's Avatar
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    I've been a member of USARK since 2010, participated in quite a few of the letter writing and phone call campaigns back then. There was some corruption with the prior founder Andrew Wyatt and things have changed up now. I don't see as much outreach for regular keepers to get involved as often as it used to be but they do quite a lot to help keepers retain the ability to legally keep our wonderful reptiles. National and state campaigns. They fight on our behalf regarding the lacey listings (python ban) and do a lot of good for the hobby IMO. It's only $40 a year as well. I hope more people join up.
    ****
    For the Horde!

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  9. #5
    BPnet Senior Member artgecko's Avatar
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    I joined a couple of years ago when they added retics and burms to the lacey act and *almost* added boas... With the threat of interstate transport (say from GA to AL) being a felony act... You can understand the repercussions of that on pet owners going to see vets, moving, etc. and of course breeders. They used funds to fight USFWS's interpretation of the Lacey act (that it banned importation and transportation to non-continental holdings like Hawaii but not interstate transport) and won... To me, that proves their intent and that they are effective.

    If you don't want to join, they do have an option to only donate to their legal fund also.
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  11. #6
    BPnet Senior Member AbsoluteApril's Avatar
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    Also, they don't mail out newsletters or anything like that, communication is through an email now and again.
    ****
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  13. #7
    Registered User Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: USARK - should I join?

    Quote Originally Posted by AbsoluteApril View Post
    Also, they don't mail out newsletters or anything like that, communication is through an email now and again.
    That's all I've seen...I'm not even a member but I get the occasional email (important announcements that I appreciate, btw).
    My impression is favorable.

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  15. #8
    BPnet Veteran jmcrook's Avatar
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    Re: USARK - should I join?

    Iíve been a member since 2016. I feel that $40/yr is more than reasonable to support folks that are active in helping fight legislation that threatens this hobby/lifestyle/industry. Only complaint is that youíre supposed to get a shirt with your membership fees and of the past 4 times Iíve registered I only got my shirt the first time and it took like 4 months


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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  17. #9
    BPnet Veteran JRLongton's Avatar
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    All very interesting. If they do actual good then I would like to support them, and if a fellow member of the Horde supports them, well I can't think of a stronger endorsement!

    I'll definitely think more seriously about it...
    \m/

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  19. #10
    BPnet Senior Member AbsoluteApril's Avatar
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    Re: USARK - should I join?

    Quote Originally Posted by jmcrook View Post
    Iíve been a member since 2016. I feel that $40/yr is more than reasonable to support folks that are active in helping fight legislation that threatens this hobby/lifestyle/industry. Only complaint is that youíre supposed to get a shirt with your membership fees and of the past 4 times Iíve registered I only got my shirt the first time and it took like 4 months

    Since the change in leadership, I've never gotten the shirt for a renewal. I did ask them about it once and they finally sent one but I just don't bother any longer (although it would be nice!)
    Also since the change, I no longer get notices advising me to renew my membership, so I just have to remember which month and make sure to do it myself.
    The website could use some updates and love, that's for sure.
    ****
    For the Horde!

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