Currently, the Crazy Critters Inc. facility houses 16 species of animals listed on CITES. The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora is an international treaty to prevent species from becoming endangered or extinct because of international trade. Under this treaty, countries work together to regulate the international trade of animal and plant species and ensure that this trade is not detrimental to the survival of wild populations.
In the early 1960s, international discussion began focusing on the rate at which the world’s wild animals and plants were being threatened by unregulated international trade. The Convention was drafted as the result of a resolution adopted in 1963 at a meeting of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) in Nairobi, Kenya.
The text of the Convention was agreed upon at a meeting of representatives of 80 countries in Washington D.C., on March 3rd, 1973. Just over 2 years later, on July 1st, 1975, CITES entered into force.
Today, 182 countries and the European Union implement CITES, which accords varying degrees of protection to over 35,000 species of animals and plants.
Crazy Critters Inc. was established to provide non-domestic, non-releasable animals with a safe and permanent home. The sanctuary has adopted over 300 animals including reptiles, birds, and assorted wildlife. Once adopted these exotic animals are housed in naturalistic settings. Allowing propagation that relieves the need for wild caught specimens.
Crazy Critters Inc. is a self-funded organization that depends on the greenhouse nursery to pay for the cost of raising exotic animals. The facility grows and sells rare species of plants such as succulent and cactus to support the care of the animals. Many are listed on the IUCN’s Redlist.
The Crazy Critters organization has produced 161 offspring from species currently found on the IUCN’s Red List. Established in 1964, the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species has evolved to become the world’s most comprehensive information source on the global conservation status of animal, fungi and plant species.
The IUCN Red List is used by government agencies, wildlife departments, conservation-related non-governmental organizations (NGOs), natural resource planners, educational organizations, students, and the business community.
The sanctuary has helped over 115 people find comfort in the re homing process of the exotic animals they could no longer care for. Mostly Tortoises and Turtles call Crazy Critters Inc. a forever home. What makes this organization unique is that after adoption, Crazy Critters Inc. continues to share the lives of the pets they adopt on social media. Providing an additional continued connection to the exotic pet owner.
The non-profit has made an attempt to become an educational destination for the area. Immediately after opening their doors, a nuisance neighbor called into the county zoning department to complain.
Even with appropriate county business licenses, Fish and Wildlife permits, and State of Florida Agriculture licenses, Lake County demanded a Conditional Use Permit. A CUP is given to satisfy a desire to undertake certain uses, such commercial or industrial use in zoning where those uses are not allowed. The cost of this permit starts at $1,450. The attorney fees and other costs are at a surprising $4,500.
We are still awaiting the public hearing for the C.U.P.Conditional Use Permit
Unfortunately, currently, the organization is unable to provide public education because of impossible requests from the county such as creating a two-lane road into the rural facility, erecting a privacy fence around the entire ten acres, and a long list of fees including a long list of inspections from our county agencies that are not even plant or animal related.
The Purvee family has had an agriculture-related business since 1963 when over 30 thousand egg-laying chickens where on the farm. Starting in 2001 Ken and Cherrice Purvee began transforming their property into a safe haven for wayward and unwanted animals. Selling their own Volkswagens and boats in 2017 in order to create a refuge that focuses on housing invasive species preventing euthanization.
A public charity is generally defined by the IRS as “not a private foundation”. It receives a substantial portion of its revenue from the general public or from the government.
In order to remain a public charity (and not a private foundation), a 501(c)(3) must obtain at least 1/3 of its donated revenue from a fairly broad base of public support.
Public support can be from individuals, companies and/or other public charities. Donations to public charities can be tax deductible to the individual donor up to 50% of the donor’s income.
We Could Not Do It With Out You!
We look forward to this year because once we file our 990, it will be easy to show what impacts we make in the community. In the next few months, we will be able to apply for grants and other forms of sponsorship.