Since 2004, we have documented accidental importation of amphibians and reptiles in BC, including a salamander (Batrachoceps sp.) and Pacific chorus frog (Pseudacris regilla) shipped in fresh produce, brown anole (Anolis sagrei) eggs imported in potted plants, and five unidentified geckos at CFB Comox in a crate from Hawaii. We also have documented a firebelly toad (Bombina orientalis), corn snakes (Pantherophis guttatus), a yellow rat snake (Pantherophis alleghaniensis), a spotted python (Antaresia maculosa), ball pythons (Python regius), a Burmese python (P. molurus), a boa constrictor (Constrictor constrictor), two bearded dragons (Pogona vitticeps), a green iguana (Iguana iguana), a spiny softshell turtle (Apalone spinifera), a peninsula cooter (Pseudemys peninsularis), map turtles (Graptemys sp.), common snapping turtles (Chelydra serpentina), two box turtles (Terrepene sp.), and many red-eared and yellowbelly sliders (Trachemys scripta) loose in BC. So far, with the exception of the red-eared sliders, most of these pets were intercepted and removed from the wild or died without reproducing.
To counter the invasive species threat, the British Columbia government has put together a team(the Inter-ministry Invasive Species Working Group , or IMISWG) to identify invaders and react quickly to eliminate introduced species where they appear. This Research Portal project supports government objectives by documenting where exotic reptiles and amphibians have appeared and assists with species identification. Information on establishment, routes of introduction and potential for spread can then be used as a guide to determine which species represent an unacceptable risk to this province.