For the first time, the America’s Family Pet Expo will be featuring booths offering live reptiles for sale. Previous expos, held in Costa Mesa, Calif., at the OC Fair and Event Center, featured reptiles that were on display only. In addition, 20 percent of the money resulting from the sale of reptiles will be donated to the United States Association of Reptile Keepers (USARK).
A press release from the America’s Family Pet Expo is reprinted below.
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Reptiles at the 2012 America’s Family Pet Expo in Costa Mesa, Calif., won’t just be for display this year – they will be for sale, too! Photo credit: Russ Case
America’s Family Pet Expo, the world’s largest consumer pet show and expo announced that it will now include the sale of reptiles during its Orange County engagement, April 20-22 at the OC Fair and Event Center, Costa Mesa. Twenty percent of all reptile booth sales at the show will benefit The United States Association of Reptile Keepers (USARK), an education and advocacy group promoting awareness and responsible care of reptiles
“Incorporating reptile sales and education into our programming advances the interest of current and future reptile enthusiasts and hobbyists,” said Doug Poindexter, President of the World Pet Association, producers of the America’s Family Pet Expo. “Audiences are eager to learn more about these ancient and mythic creatures, and we’re excited to be what could be their first introduction to the species.”
The 3-day expo will feature dozens of varieties of reptiles. From lizards
, to tarantulas – of all colors, shapes and sizes – adults and kids will have the opportunity to interact with hands-on demonstrations, touching and holding. “To have a snake around your neck, or come nose-to-nose with a lizard is a unique experience, ” said Poindexter. “By getting to know these animals on a personal level is the first step to understanding how to be a responsible owner and choosing which one is right for them.”
In addition to reaching more than 30,000 expo guests and featuring more than 1,000 dogs, cats, birds, equine, fish and other animals, showcasing reptiles will be an opportunity to touch upon a vast media audience, furthering education and awareness outside of the Expo. In 2011, America’s Family Pet Expo garnered millions of traditional and social media impressions spanning from television, print, online to outdoor messaging. “Our footprint is expanding to include hundreds of thousands of animal lovers, “said Poindexter. “Currently, 90% of our audience either owns a pet, or are thinking about pet ownership. Adding reptiles is another way to reach out to those who may be considering adding a new member to their family.”
According to USARK, because of the general’s public growing interest in reptiles, their acceptance and desire to purchase is expanding, “Reptiles are increasingly visible in television, movies and advertising. The majority of pet stores in the United States now feature reptiles and equipment, food and dry goods marketed for reptiles. The reptile exhibits in zoos are typically among the most visited areas in each zoo.”
“We’re excited to continue the movement for the advancement of reptile care and conservation,” says Poindexter. “Working with USARK, our goal is to ensure that these great creatures have a voice, so that future enthusiasts can enjoy their beauty for generations to come.”