Tyrone Township Planning Commission: proposed new ordinance on exotic animals

The Tyrone Township Planning Commission (Fenton, MI) is getting closer to approving a proposed new ordinance that would address the keeping of exotic animals under specific circumstances, the Commission reported on Tuesday, May 17, 2016.

The proposed amendments will be under Section 21.52, Supplemental Shoreland Regulations. The proposed new Section 21.58 is called, “Keeping and display of exotic animals and wild animals,” along with affected Section 2.01, which is “Definitions,” Section 4.03 special land uses, and Section 21.49 “Keeping of pets.”

Final text changes to the proposed Exotic Animal and Supplemental Shoreland Regulations were tabled at the May 10th Planning Commission meeting to allow for final review at the next Planning Commission meeting on June 14th.

In March, Tyrone Township officials became aware of an unusual business at a property on Hartland Road, between Gordon and Germany roads: Supe’s Exotic Jungle. The facility began in 2011 as a small pet business; in 2015 evolved into educational exhibits and shows. At a meeting requested by township administration, the owners were instructed to complete an application and pay the fees needed to conduct a review and schedule an appointment before the Tyrone Township Planning Commission.

“Supes Exotic Jungle has been actively involved in getting through the process,” said Tyrone Township Supervisor Mike Cunningham. “Once the ordinance changes are approved by the Planning Commission, they will come to the Tyrone Township Board of Trustees for final approval. We are not going to have them cease operations since they responded right away, as long as they show they intend to be compliant,” said Cunningham.

“We do not own or plan to own any dangerous animals and our animals receive the best possible care, including having an exotic animal vet on call 24/7,” said Brent Barrick, owner. “The vast majority of our animals were raised by us and we chose the species based on their temperament and ability to be safely displayed to the public and children,” he added.

Barrick said Supe’s Exotic Jungle is focused completely on education and safe, fun interactions with animals from around the world. Barrick said the Michigan Department of Agriculture verified for him that Supe’s Exotic Jungle does not need a state license for the type of animals and business they have.

Any future animals they bring into the state would need a veterinarian’s certificate but there is nothing required unless they add to their collection from out of state in the future.

Barrick has a USDA Class C Exhibitor License, and insurance that covers up to $1 million for each occurrence, if there was an issue with someone being injured by an animal.  Supe’s is a completely family owned and operated business.

WCCLAS News Staff

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