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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Is it possible to add a list of prohibited plants? For example, Hygrophila polysperma in any of its variants is a federally banned noxious weed. It cannot be sold by any of the retailers that we use. Therefore, it really should not be traded or sold here. By allowing this plant or any other federally banned plant to be traded here, we are supporting the transport and sale of an illegal plant that has taken over many of the waterways in the Southern states or has the potential to displace our native flora.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Sorry, No. APC will not be providing a list of "prohibited species". To do so implies that we thoroughly understand the relevant state, federal, and international laws regarding their collection, keeping, and distribution. It also implies that any species not listed is universally OK. We simply don't have resources to do that. It is and always will be the respective hobbyists' responsibility to ensure that they are in compliance with laws and regulations.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Sorry, No. APC will not be providing a list of "prohibited species". To do so implies that we thoroughly understand the relevant state, federal, and international laws regarding their collection, keeping, and distribution. It also implies that any species not listed is universally OK. We simply don't have resources to do that. It is and always will be the respective hobbyists' responsibility to ensure that they are in compliance with laws and regulations.
Yup, what Bryce said. That isn't to say your concerns for the environment aren't valid. We just can't take on those liabilities.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Yup, what Bryce said. That isn't to say your concerns for the environment aren't valid. We just can't take on those liabilities.
Are you not taking on the liability by irresponsibly perpetuating the habit? If APC is offering a marketplace, then it seems APC is technically liable. Also, it's not just my concern for the environment, its my concern that we are being irresponsible hobbyists. It was hobbyists that caused the introduction of H. polysperma, Burmese Pythons and Northern Snakeheads into our native habitats.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Sorry, No. APC will not be providing a list of "prohibited species". To do so implies that we thoroughly understand the relevant state, federal, and international laws regarding their collection, keeping, and distribution. It also implies that any species not listed is universally OK. We simply don't have resources to do that. It is and always will be the respective hobbyists' responsibility to ensure that they are in compliance with laws and regulations.
As I see it, by providing a market place, you already imply that you thoroughly understand the relevant state, federal and international laws regarding their collection and distribution in the U.S. If it were this simple, our aquatic plant distributors should just cancel their agricultural resale licenses and start forums in order to sell their plants without any restrictions.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

As I see it, by providing a market place, you already imply that you thoroughly understand the relevant state, federal and international laws regarding their collection and distribution in the U.S. If it were this simple, our aquatic plant distributors should just cancel their agricultural resale licenses and start forums in order to sell their plants without any restrictions.
Not necessarily. See eBay and/or Craigslist TOS/EULA/etc. There usually is a similar disclaimer that the marketplace/service cannot be responsible for everything that is posted/uploaded/sold/traded/etc. on the marketplace/service. However, once informed of an item that is illicit/illegal in nature, then the service/marketplace can take steps to remove any such posts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Not necessarily. See eBay and/or Craigslist TOS/EULA/etc. There usually is a similar disclaimer that the marketplace/service cannot be responsible for everything that is posted/uploaded/sold/traded/etc. on the marketplace/service. However, once informed of an item that is illicit/illegal in nature, then the service/marketplace can take steps to remove any such posts.
Well, this isn't ebay. This is a specialized, hobbyist forum with only a fraction of the traffic. It seems to me that along with informing people of the best lights and ferts, the site should also inform its users on how to be a responsible hobbyist. Apparently, I am the only one concerned with the issue, which seriously troubles me.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Nelumbo, the answer is no.

Let's move on. If you'd like to discuss this further, please move the discussion out of this sticky to an appropriate thread of its own.

No one doubts your good intentions or your concern for the environment. The APC staff all feel exactly the same way. We frequently and regularly remove posts regarding items for sale that we feel are unethical, illegal, or against principles of being responsible hobbyists. What you are proposing, however, is so far beyond the capabilities of this forum or any forum that it simply isn't realistic to keep up with city, county, state, federal, and international laws regarding these species.

Unless your comments about potential liability are founded on actual legal precedent or on the advice of legal counsel, I submit that they are statements of opinion, not fact.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Are people who are already sponsors allowed to sell anything in the forum if it is not part of their normal buisness stuff? Occasionaly, I think three or four times in the last four years, I have posted something for sale there as a hobbyist, a one time thing i want to get rid of. Is that allowed, or would you prefer me to post it in my vendor forum? I would not want to get an infraction for doing so. This is the first time I have heard the infraction policy even mentioned here publically.

Are you going to start separating out from the general population here those who sell plants on a regular basis, or make their own C02 diffusors, or drop checkers to sell and classify them differently? On Planted tank.net they call them power sellers. Is that what we are leaning towards here? I know the same moderators/ people are involved with both forums
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

would you prefer me to post it in my vendor forum?
Yes. That would probably be best.

Are you going to start separating out from the general population here those who sell plants on a regular basis, or make their own C02 diffusors, or drop checkers to sell and classify them differently?
No.

I know the same moderators/ people are involved with both forums
We don't have any moderators in common that I'm aware of.
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

I realize everyone has moved on from local laws regarding plant collection, but I agree this is important and the information should be on a forum that strives to be the premier aquatic plant forum on the net. If a concerned member were to collect, say, local laws and post them to each club forum, it would be tremendously valuable to the planted community. (I understand why APC staff is unwilling to undertake this effort. I am suggesting concerned members should when they make time or if they have immediate access to these laws and relevant information.)
 

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The staff at APC would encourage all of our members to post and discuss information that will help us all remain in compliance with government regulations. We all have a responsibility to promote correct environmental practices. Forums are a great place for this sort of information to be shared.

With regards to the "For Sale or Trade" portion of the website, APC staff will continue to monitor items offered for sale. We do not have the capability or resources to monitor or police each and every transaction. When encountered, posts containing offensive, illegal, or unethical material will be removed.
 

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I am a firm believer that the sales of illegal plants (while not being a good idea) is not the reason for invasive species. The main reason for invasive species is careless hobbyists that are obviously doing something that they shouldn't be doing in the first place, somehow introducing non native plant species to the wild! What are you thinking? How else would non native species get introduced? I mean how else does a non native plant get introduced to the wild if someone doesn't put it there. I am not saying that I am against the law, it is necessary, it would have never happened if the sale had not taken place. (TO A CARELESS HOBBYIST!)
 

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I think it would be wonderful for members who have the information to post a list of prohibited species in a thread/sticky devoted to just that. As more info is gathered, the list can be extended accordingly. As hobbyists, it is each of our responsibilities to educate ourselves on our respective local laws regarding aquatic plants. I do not believe that it is APC's responsibilty to do it for us, but I know the website would be happy to facilitate our data collecting/storing via an appropriate thread/sticky.

-Dave
 

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Re: Amendment and FAQ to the For Sale or Trade Rules

Are you not taking on the liability by irresponsibly perpetuating the habit? If APC is offering a marketplace, then it seems APC is technically liable. Also, it's not just my concern for the environment, its my concern that we are being irresponsible hobbyists. It was hobbyists that caused the introduction of H. polysperma, Burmese Pythons and Northern Snakeheads into our native habitats.
I think there is an suitable analogy here. If you or I were to go into a mall to sell crack cocaine, the owners of the mall would not be responsible simply because they failed to post a 'no selling crack cocaine' sign at all of the entrances. To put it another way: Your failure to adhere to the law or, conversely, any laws broken by you are your responsibility. Simply because you have taken advantage of an otherwise legitimate forum--a literal one such as this or a figurative one such as a mall or busy street corner--to facilitate nefarious deeds doesn't somehow indicate liability on the part of those who maintain said forum. Now if those who manage the forum are involved with dubious enterprises.... then they get to join the Micharl Vick cellmate of the year club.

-Aaron
 

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I am a firm believer that the sales of illegal plants (while not being a good idea) is not the reason for invasive species. The main reason for invasive species is careless hobbyists that are obviously doing something that they shouldn't be doing in the first place, somehow introducing non native plant species to the wild! What are you thinking? How else would non native species get introduced? I mean how else does a non native plant get introduced to the wild if someone doesn't put it there. I am not saying that I am against the law, it is necessary, it would have never happened if the sale had not taken place. (TO A CARELESS HOBBYIST!)
Right, and my guess is that those who created the law agree with you. Which is why they don't want 'careless hobbyists' to be able to buy most invasive species and plunk them down in the wild.... ;)
 

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There is a site where it tells in almost every state when a plant is illegal... I just cannot seem to find it but is a must bookmarky.

Found it:

http://plants.usda.gov/java/noxiousDriver#federal
How funny! I'm on that site nearly every day looking up plant id's and suitable uses, but I've never gone to that link or even thought about looking for it!

Thanks so much for linking that on this site. :p

-Dave
 

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Planted tank.net has a sticky of all the federally banned plants, and Aquaria central has a sticky with the federal and some of the states. The federal is fairly easy. The state by state is more complicated because it differs state by state, and then there is three different levels of state prohibited plants.

There has been rumors that the USDA is going after WEB sites, auction sites in particular who allow prohibited plants to be sold. Someone posted a letter from the USDA warning of this somewhere... but I have never seen any evidence of it. I got a letter and an email from the state of Maine instructing me to voluntarily note on my WEB site which plants I sold that were banned in Maine. (there whole list was only four plants, and I had two of them)

If you want to play it safe, just post a simple disclaimer with the most heavily watched plants on the federal list posted. Hygrophila polysperma, Eichornia and alternanthera sessilis are the ones that the USDA currently goes completely bannanas over. They made me destroy a whole shipment of alternanthera reineckii just because they suspected it was sessilis. They also wanted a list of everyone I sold the plant to, but since they caught the whole shipment before I sold any, it became mute.

The legal way, according to the USDA to dispose of any plant, plant trimmings, or plant material is to either burn it or freeze it. Flushing it down the toilet or throwing it out in the garbage or a storm drain is illegal.
 
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