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Announcing Discontinuation of Amos Rehabilitation Keep Tours

Announcing Discontinuation of Amos Rehabilitation Keep Tours

The University of Texas Marine Science Institute (UTMSI) regrets to announce the discontinuation of tours at the Amos Rehabilitation Keep (ARK) effective January 1, 2024, due to a change in permit policies implemented by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for captive species enclosures for birds. This permit policy implements new regulations for exhibiting the birds to the public. To continue rehabilitating as many birds as it has in the past and pursue its central mission, UTMSI has chosen not to pursue the revised USDA permit for the Amos Rehabilitation Keep, which would require serving fewer birds in its current space in order to exhibit them to the public. 

Since 1999, ARK facilities have been utilized for rehabilitating bird and sea turtle species, but public tours of the facility, which began in 2021, will no longer be offered. The ARK will continue its crucial mission of rescuing and rehabilitating birds, sea turtles, terrestrial turtles, and tortoises from Mustang and San Jose Islands. 

The Amos Rehabilitation Keep has been a valuable resource for both education and conservation efforts, allowing the public to gain insight into the rehabilitation process and the importance of preserving local wildlife. UTMSI recognizes the significance of community engagement and has been grateful for the support received over the years.

The decision to cease public tours aligns with UTMSI's commitment to upholding the highest animal care and welfare standards. By refraining from obtaining a USDA permit at this time, the institute ensures that the focus remains on the well-being and rehabilitation of the animals under its care.

UTMSI expresses its gratitude to the community, volunteers, and supporters who have contributed to the success of the Amos Rehabilitation Keep. The institute remains dedicated to its conservation and environmental education mission and looks forward to finding alternative ways to engage with the public in the future.

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