New Mexico Department of Game and Fish Archive News Releases 2007-2013

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New Mexico Department of Game and Fish
Media contact: Dan Williams, (505) 476-8004
Public contact: (505) 476-8000




GALLUP – The State Game Commission will accept public input and conduct additional discussion of changes to the State’s importation rule for non-domestic animals, birds and fish Thursday, June 3, during its regularly scheduled meeting at the University of New Mexico Gallup Campus, 200 College Road. The meeting will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. In Calvin Hall Auditorium, Room 248.

The Department has been taking public comments about the existing rule for several years and will continue to do so through the July 8 meeting of the State Game Commission. The Commission is expected to take action on the updated rule at that time.

In an effort to address many of the questions coming from the public, the Department developed the following list:

  • Is this a new rule?  No. The Department is updating the existing importation rule, which has been in place for 10 years. The associated law has been on the books since the 1960s (17-3-32 NMSA).
  • What is the purpose of this rule? To protect public health and safety, and native wildlife, particularly from dangerous animals and diseases borne by non-native wildlife.
  • What animals do not need an importation permit? Domestic animals like dogs, cats and livestock. Livestock is regulated by the New Mexico Livestock Board (
  • Do I have to get an importation permit for animals already in New Mexico? No. The Department is updating the rule for animals being legally imported into the state.
  • Is there an animal possession permit? Some protected wild-by-nature species do have possession limits, but most common pet animals do not.
  • If I buy an animal from a local pet store do I need an importation permit?  No, if the pet store imported the animal, they were responsible for the importation permit. Just keep your receipt.
  • Do pet stores need to get a permit for each animal they import into New Mexico?  No, pet stores may obtain an annual permit that covers multiple animals.
  • If I am given an animal, do I need an importation permit?  Not if it’s an animal already in New Mexico.
  • Do I need an export permit to leave the State of New Mexico?  No.
  • Do I need a permit to travel through the state with my animals?  No
  • Who can apply for a prohibited species in the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (C.I.T.E.S. Group IV) list on your web site?  Those animals are typically held by zoos and qualified experts like professional animal handlers.
  • How can I suggest changes to the species lists?  The agency is taking public comment about this regulation right now at


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