Crewe’s exotic pet store Evolutionary Exotics is adding to it’s range of scaly friends and is looking to go online and home deliver reptiles. Evolutionary Exotics has been waiting on its AAL (Animal Activities Licensing), to sell animals like bearded dragons, chameleons, more snakes, tortoises and toads.
Josh Flood is the owner of the shop on Edleston Road which already sells Chameleons, Tarantulas, Scorpions, Mantis and insects. He has previously worked at Reaseheath zoo and says that more specialists are needed if the ownership of rare breed animals is to continue.
He says there is a lack of a decent specialist pet store in the area supplying a wealth of knowledge about leading husbandry techniques and how to keep these animals correctly.
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“We’re an exotic specialist reptile pet shop. So obviously, we specialize in reptiles, amphibians, invertebrates, tarantulas, scorpions,” Josh said. “The amount that these animals have now, become popular in the pet trade over the last 10 to 20 years or so has grown, since the early 90s. This is why obviously, we’re in dire need of specialists.
“The AL license is an Animal Activities License. It’s to regulate the sale and looking after of animals like this, to just make sure that we’re doing the right thing for all these animals, housing them in the correct size, enclosures, and it’s making sure that we’re then portraying that.”
Once the new licence comes through, Josh hopes to expand the business, even home delivering reptiles.
“I’m a specialist in, keeping, housing, looking after reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates, so sort of the lower vertebrate step section. I used to work in zoos, various pet shops, and I’ve specialized since I was around the age of about 13, with these guys.”
“We have specialists because the care needs for these animals is so specific. It’s all about environmental parameters, making sure that the enclosures are correct for them, you know, things like that. dietary requirements can also be very complicated supplement regimes.
“The problem with them was there was so many in the 90s that you could easily get hold of. We didn’t really know the care requirements back then. Now, that we do, it’s more imperative that we have specialist shops that know exactly what they’re on about, and promoting the welfare for these animals.“
Josh says that there’s a large demand for reptiles and invertebrates.
He added: “Well, you’d be surprised nowadays, it’s a hell of a lot easier than looking after a cat and a dog all the time. A lot of the landlords as well, are more than happy to have, reptiles, fish, amphibians, anything like that within their rented accommodation.
“And then a lot of other people keep them for education purposes. We’re trying to study these animals, and conserve them so this is another big reason we have a lot of big keepers. I have people travel from all over the country, they’re all here to learn on how to work with these animals, and promote conservation and education for the future.
“We mentioned that a lot of people might say a snake wants to be living in a tree in the jungle and doesn’t want to be in Crewe. A lot of the animals we work with nowadays are captive bred. And Brexit has stopped a lot of the Import / Export, a lot of the animals we are looking at nowadays are captive bred in the UK, this is where a lot of the licensing comes in.”
Josh explained that’s it is irresponsible to just own a reptile without having the experience of caring for them and if they were to escape they would be unlikely to last long.
“Most reptiles that get out in our natural ecosystem in the in the UK wouldn’t survive,” he added. “It’s far too cold, nighttime temperatures would kill these off. This is an Australian species that normally sits at 32 Celsius plus, obviously we’re not getting 32 Celsius on a regular basis.”
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