We go through this over and over. No herps can legally leave or enter the USA without being inspected by US fish & wildlife. To do so is breaking US federal law. These inspections must be set up a couple days in advance as USF&W isn't permanently posted at any border crossings and no border crossings are considered "designated ports" and that is where inspections usually take place(major airports). Getting inspections at "non designated ports"
is doable but you need an "exception from designated port permit" It's 25 bucks, and the US import/export license is 50US per annum..
The import/export license and exception from designated port permit is required for all commercial transactions and are usually ordered several weeks before they are required. You will first get an application, then will have to mail it back with a US$ cheque, and wait several weeks for processing.
If you have a few "pets" they might wave the license and exception permit, but you still are supposed to arrange an inspection.. and that usually costs 55US, even if you don't have the license and except from des permit.
Lots of people bring NON CITES stuff across and simply declare it to Canada customs and pay the GST & PST, as there is no natural mechanism to interact with US officials when crossing back to Canada..
Just be aware that while this is fine with Canada customs, you've broken US law to get that far.
Now Canada customs wont tell you this because it's not their jurisdiciton or job to inform Canadians of US law. Problems are only likely to arrise if for some reason they contact the US side about your animals, or you are sent back with them.
If US customs then finds out, you crossed the border with animals that weren't inspected, you might be in a bit of trouble and subject to a fine or denied US access in the future.
Herpetology - more than a hobby
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celebrating 26 years of herp breeding