Commitment to Protect Our Environment
At Petco, Animals Always Come First!
Habitattitude™ is a "conservation state of mind" that commits to environmental protection by not releasing unwanted fish or aquatic plants into public areas. Petco fully supports Habitattitude. Habitattitude is a national initiative developed by the Aquatic Nuisance Species (ANS) Task Force in partnership with the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council (PIJAC), U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Sea Grant and NOAA.
Protecting our environment
In order to continue enjoying our natural resources, we must protect them. An invasive species or "aquatic hitchhiker" is a species not native to a body of water that causes ecological harm. If these species become established, they can cause environmental damage, degrade aquatic resources and make waters unusable for recreation. Collectively, these species, both terrestrial and aquatic, cost our country billions of dollars in damages every year. Their impact reduces fish populations, ruins boat engines, makes lakes and rivers unusable by boaters and swimmers, increases operating costs of water treatment, power and industrial processing plants, reduces native species, degrades ecosystems and reduces property values.
What you can do to help
Aquarists, pond owners and water gardeners all share a common responsibility to our water resources and to their aquatic life. By having these species, we must accept certain responsibilities:
- To care for the species' well-being and provide a suitable environment.
- To maintain and take the appropriate steps to keep the species in our privately owned enclosures contained.
- To properly relocate these aquatic life or plants if they are not native to our aquatic system.
- To follow the laws of your state regarding the acquisition, collection, possession, purchase, sale, release and transfer of ownership of these these non-native plants and aquatic life.
If you have acquired an undesirable, nonnative aquatic plant or aquatic life for your aquarium or water garden, it is important not to release these plants or aquatic life into the environment. This includes not flushing them into the city sewer system.
Habitattitude encourages you to choose one of these alternatives:
- Contact the store where the plant or aquatic life was purchased for proper handling advice or possible return.
- Give or trade with another aquarist, pond owner or water gardener.
- Donate to a local aquarium society, school or aquatic business.
- Seal aquatic plants in plastic bags and dispose in trash.
- Contact a veterinarian specializing in exotics for guidance on humane disposal of aquatic life.
Habitattitude is about consumer awareness and responsible behaviors. We must all work together to prevent the proliferation of harmful plants, fish and other animals throughout our country. Stopping the spread of these species represents one of our greatest natural resource challenges.