Picnic at the Wildlife Discovery Center, Sept 9th, 2017. Details coming soon!!


Illinois Herp Laws

"At last," you're thinking, "someone is clarifying the Illinois laws that pertain to herps!"

Well, no. I'm not particularly bright and I don't have a law degree. The former means that it's irrational for me to advise and the latter means that it's illegal. If you are a lawyer and would like to write a more comprehensive article, we'd love to publish it. What I'm trying to do is list the laws that might pertain to herps and provide you with links so that you can make up your own mind. It's not easy, because Illinois law is not particularly clear in this area. I've tried to find all the state laws that may affect your hobby. I can't guarantee that I have them all, but I will say that I have done a lot of research and this should be a fairly comprehensive list as of January 2009. I haven't attempted to cover local jurisdictions. Some counties or cities also have ordinances that may apply to herps, and some have searchable databases covering these laws. Try googling "your government's name" and ordinances, acts, laws, or statutesYou may find local jurisdictions have more restrictive herp ordinances. I discovered that the county I live in actually has a narrower definition of dangerous animals than the state does. That's not uncommon, and the more restrictive local law takes precedence. There is a municipality in southern Illinois that prohibits keeping all reptiles! If the records are not online, you'll have to rely on your local clerk to help.

The statutes and acts are quoted verbatim when in bold type. My comments are in normal type.

I thank John P. Levell for his book (A Field Guide to Reptiles and the Law, second edition. Lanesboro, MN: Serpent's Tale), which gave me a starting place for this article, and especially Mike Redmer of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and Scott Ballard of the Illinois Department of Natural Resources for their time and expertise in reviewing and suggesting valuable additions and changes. Any mistakes are my own. Please alert me to mistakes you may notice so I can correct them.

Any individual interested in herps should be familiar with the United States Endangered Species Act of 1973, which not only affects the animals you may keep in captivity, but also how you should deal with listed animals in the wild. The act and summary pages may be accessed here: http://www.fws.gov/endangered/whatwedo.html#General

The current list of federally protected species is here: http://www.fws.gov/Endangered/wildlife.html#Species

Besides knowing what animals are listed, you should probably be most familiar with this definition:
"The term 'take' means to harass, harm, pursue, hunt, shoot, wound, kill, trap, capture, or collect, or to attempt to engage in any such conduct."

Which can be found at: http://www.fws.gov/Endangered/ESA/sec3.html

Note that the definition of "take" is very encompassing. Are you harassing the animal when posing it for photographing?

Another federal law that touches on herps is:
TITLE 21--FOOD AND DRUGS
CHAPTER I--FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION
DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER L--REGULATIONS UNDER CERTAIN OTHER ACTS ADMINISTERED BY THE FOOD AND DRUG ADMINISTRATION

Accessed here:
http://www.accessdata.fda.gov/scripts/cdrh/cfdocs/cfcfr/cfrsearch.cfm?fr=1240.62

This is the 4" turtle rule. Note that it's administered by the Food and Drug Administration. Here's a bit of what is most sited:
PART 1240 -- CONTROL OF COMMUNICABLE DISEASES
Subpart D--Specific Administrative Decisions Regarding Interstate Shipments
Sec. 1240.62 Turtles intrastate and interstate requirements.
(a)Definition. As used in this section the term "turtles" includes all animals commonly known as turtles, tortoises, terrapins, and all other animals of the order Testudinata, class Reptilia, except marine species (families Dermachelidae and Chelonidae).
(b)Sales; general prohibition. Except as otherwise provided in this section, viable turtle eggs and live turtles with a carapace length of less than 4 inches shall not be sold, held for sale, or offered for any other type of commercial or public distribution.

With some exceptions:
(d)Exceptions. The provisions of this section are not applicable to:

  • (1) The sale, holding for sale, and distribution of live turtles and viable turtle eggs for bona fide scientific, educational, or exhibitional purposes, other than use as pets.
  • (2) The sale, holding for sale, and distribution of live turtles and viable turtle eggs not in connection with a business.
  • (3) The sale, holding for sale, and distribution of live turtles and viable turtle eggs intended for export only, provided that the outside of the shipping package is conspicuously labeled "For Export Only."

Finally, field herpers should be aware that Federal laws or administrative rules and prescribed penalties are often in place that extend protection to native fauna, including herps, on federally-owned lands (e.g., National Forests, National Wildlife Refuges, Corps of Engineers lands). There are sometimes exceptions. For example, species that are considered "game" (e.g., snapping turtles in Illinois) and that have seasons allowing licensed take under state law may sometimes be taken on Federal land. Similar provisions are usually in effect on state and other public lands. The best way to clarify is to check with the site superintendent's office, or look for posted signs that list rules in effect for a given site. When in doubt, don't collect.

Illinois also has an Endangered Species Protection Act, (520 ILCS 10/) Illinois Endangered Species Protection Act:
http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?.....

Three definitions from Section 2 are probably most pertinent:

"Endangered Species" means any species of plant or animal classified as endangered under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973, P.L. 93?205, and amendments thereto, plus such other species which the Board may list as in danger of extinction in the wild in Illinois due to one or more causes including but not limited to, the destruction, diminution or disturbance of habitat, overexploitation, predation, pollution, disease, or other natural or manmade factors affecting its prospects of survival.

"Threatened Species" means any species of plant or animal classified as threatened under the Federal Endangered Species Act of 1973, P.L. 93?205, and amendments thereto, plus such other species which the Board may list as likely to become endangered in the wild in Illinois within the foreseeable future.

"Take" means, in reference to animals and animal products, to harm, hunt, shoot, pursue, lure, wound, kill, destroy, harass, gig, spear, ensnare, trap, capture, collect, or to attempt to engage in such conduct. "Take" means, in reference to plants and plant products, to collect, pick, cut, dig up, kill, destroy, bury, crush, or harm in any manner.

Note that all federally listed species are also listed in Illinois and Illinois has a few added definitions for "take."

Illinois does have a permit process for listed species. A permit may be issued for "possession only" or for "possession and/or sale." Make sure you apply for the permit you want and comply with the permit you receive.

(520 ILCS 10/4) (from Ch. 8, par. 334)
Sec. 4. Upon receipt of proper application and approval of the same, the Department may issue to any qualified person a permit which allows the taking, possession, transport, purchase, or disposal of specimens or products of an endangered or threatened species of animal or federal endangered plant after the effective date of this Act for justified purposes, that will enhance the survival of the affected species by zoological, botanical or educational or for scientific purposes only. Rules for the issuance and maintenance of permits shall be promulgated by the Department after consultation with and written approval of the Board.


You may write to this address for an application:

Endangered Species Program Manager
Division of Natural Heritage
Illinois Department of Natural Resources
524 S. Second Street
Springfield, IL 62701-1787

The Illinois Endangered Species Protection Board web site may be accessed here:
http://www.dnr.state.il.us/espb/index.htm. This site has more information on obtaining permits.

The major Illinois statute that pertains to capturing amphibians and reptiles is:
AUGUST 3, 1998          17 ILL. ADM. CODE          CH. I, SEC. 880
TITLE 17: CONSERVATION
CHAPTER I: DEPARTMENT OF NATURAL RESOURCES
SUBCHAPTER b: FISH AND WILDLIFE
PART 880
THE TAKING OF REPTILES AND AMPHIBIANS

The act is pretty clearly written. Some of what it states is that you need a valid sport fishing license to capture any frog or turtle, details legitimate methods of capture, limits daily catch to eight of each species for reptiles and amphibians and sixteen of each species for possession limits, (though captive born animals can be possessed in greater quantities for up to ninety days), stipulates that you will restore the habitat to as near the original condition as possible, has a season for taking bullfrogs and prohibits collecting in the LaRue-Pine Hills/Otter Pond Research Natural Area.

The complete act:
AUTHORITY: Implementing and authorized by Sections 5/10-30, 10-35, 10-60, 10-115, 20-5 and 20-90 of the Fish and Aquatic Life Code [515 ILCS 5/10-30, 10-35, 10-60, 10-115, 20-5 and 20-90] and the Aquaculture Development Act [20 ILCS 215/1 et seq.] and P.A. 86-1453, effective December 12, 1991.
SOURCE: Adopted at 16 Ill. Reg. 109, effective December 20, 1991; recodified by changing the agency name from Department of Conservation to Department of Natural Resources at 20 Ill. Reg. 9389; amended at 22 Ill. Reg. 14852, effective August 3, 1998.

Section 880.10 Prohibition of Commercial Use
It is unlawful to take, possess, buy, sell, offer to buy or sell or barter any reptile, amphibian, or their eggs or parts taken from the wild in Illinois for commercial purposes unless otherwise authorized by statute.

Section 880.20 Methods of Taking and Capture

  • a) Only those persons who hold a valid sport fishing license or a valid Sportsmen's Combination License may take or attempt to take turtles and/or frogs [515 ILCS 5/20-5].
  • b) Turtles may be taken only by hand, hook and line, or landing net. For the purposes of this Part a landing net is defined as a hand-held net with no greater than 1.5 inch bar measurement netting, an opening of not greater than 5 feet in diameter, and a handle.
  • c) Bullfrogs may be taken only between June 15 and August 31, both dates inclusive. Bullfrogs may be taken only by hook and line, gig, pitchfork, spear, bow and arrow, hand, or landing net.
  • d) No person shall take bullfrogs by commercial fishing devices, including dip nets, hoop nets, traps or seines, or by the use of firearms, airguns or gas guns.
  • e) No person shall take or possess any species of reptile or amphibian listed as endangered or threatened in Illinois (17 Ill. Adm. Code 1010), except as provided by 17 Ill. Adm. Code 1070.<
  • f) All other species of reptiles and amphibians may be captured by any device or method which is not designed or intended to bring about the death or serious injury of the animals captured. This shall not restrict the use of legally taken reptiles or amphibians as bait by anglers.
  • g) Any captured reptiles or amphibians which are not to be retained in the possession of the captor shall be immediately released at the site of capture. (Source: Amended at 22 Ill. Reg. 14852, effective August 3, 1998)
Section 880.30 Daily Catch and Possession Limits The daily catch limit for reptiles is eight (8) of each species and for amphibians is eight (8) of each species. The possession limit for reptiles is sixteen (16) of each species and for amphibians is sixteen (16) of each species.

Section 880.40 Captive Born Reptiles and Amphibians Captive born offspring of a legally held reptile or amphibian, not intended for commercial purposes, is exempt from the possession limits of Section 880.30 for a period of ninety (90) days.

Section 880.50 Protection of Habitat Habitat features which are disturbed in the course of a search for reptiles and amphibians shall be returned to as near their original position and condition as possible, e.g. overturned stones and logs shall be restored to their original locations.

Section 880.60 Areas Closed to the Taking of Reptiles and Amphibians Unless otherwise allowed by statute or administrative rule, the taking of reptiles and amphibians is prohibited in the following areas: the LaRue-Pine Hills/Otter Pond Research Natural Area in Union County. The closed area shall include the Research Natural Area as designated by the U.S. Forest Service and the right-of-way of Forest Road 345 from the intersection of Forest Road 345 with Forest Road 236 to the intersection of Forest Road 345 with the Missouri Pacific railroad tracks. (Source: Added at 22 Ill. Reg. 14852, effective August 3, 1998)

Section 880.70 Additional Protective Regulations Except as otherwise allowed by statute or administrative rule, taking or possession of the following species of reptiles and amphibians is prohibited: copperbelly watersnake (Nerodia erythrogaster neglecta) in Edwards, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Johnson, Lawrence, Massac, Pope, Pulaski, Richland, Saline, Wabash, Wayne and White counties. (Source: Added at 22 Ill. Reg. 14852. effective August 3, 1998)


This statute may be accessed here:
http://dnr.state.il.us/legal/adopted/880.pdf



Just in case you feel the government is always restricting your actions, the law states that if you are legally collecting, it's against the law for someone to interfere with you under:

HUNTER INTERFERENCE PROHIBITION
(720 ILCS 125/2) (from Ch. 61, par. 302)

Sec. 2. Any person who performs any of the following is guilty of a Class B misdemeanor:

(a) Wilfully obstructs or interferes with the lawful taking of wild animals by another person with the specific intent to prevent that lawful taking.
The complete act can be accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/il....

Anyone who keeps herps in captivity needs to be familiar with the Illinois Dangerous Animals Act (720 ILCS 585). This is perhaps the most confusing piece of legislation pertaining herps in Illinois.

This link will take you to the complete act: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID...

This act defines a dangerous animal and essentially prohibits individuals from keeping them. The definition includes "any poisonous or life-threatening reptile." Note that amphibians aren't mentioned and seem to get a free pass, so you needn't worry about your amphiumas or giant salamanders.

(720 ILCS 585/0.1) (from Ch. 8, par. 240)

Sec. 0.1. As used in this Act, unless the context otherwise requires:

"Dangerous animal" means a lion, tiger, leopard, ocelot, jaguar, cheetah, margay, mountain lion, lynx, bobcat, jaguarundi, wolf or coyote, or any poisonous or life-threatening reptile.

(720 ILCS 585/1) (from Ch. 8, par. 241)

Sec. 1. No person shall have a right of property in, keep, harbor, care for, act as custodian of or maintain in his possession any dangerous animal except at a properly maintained zoological park, federally licensed exhibit, circus, scientific or educational institution, research laboratory, veterinary hospital, hound running area, or animal refuge in an escape-proof enclosure.
(Source: P.A. 95-196, eff. 1-1-08.)

Note that while the feds have regulations for obtaining an exhibitor's license, it does NOT apply to reptiles or amphibians. A federal exhibitor's license does not exempt a herp exhibitor from the Illinois statute. The pertinent definition under the federal statute is:

Code of Federal Regulations
Title 9: Animals and Animal Products
Part 1-Definiton of Terms
Sec. 1.1-Definitions.
Animal means any live or dead dog, cat, nonhuman primate, guinea pig, hamster, rabbit, or any other warmblooded animal, which is being used, or is intended for use for research, teaching, testing, experimentation, or exhibition purposes, or as a pet. This term excludes birds, rats of the genus Rattus, and mice of the genus Mus, bred for use in research; horses not used for research purposes; and other farm animals, such as, but not limited to, livestock or poultry used or intended for use as food or fiber, or livestock or poultry used or intended for use for improving animal nutrition, breeding, management, or production efficiency, or for improving the quality of food or fiber. With respect to a dog, the term means all dogs, including those used for hunting, security, or breeding purposes.

Accessed here: http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?type=sim

And the licensing paragraph is:

Title 9: Animal and Animal Products
Part 2- Regulations
Subpart A-Licensing
2.1 Requirements and application.
(a)(1) Any person operating or intending to operate as a dealer, exhibitor, or operator of an auction sale, except persons who are exempted from the licensing requirements under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, must have a valid license. A person must be 18 years of age or older to obtain a license. A person seeking a license shall apply on a form which will be furnished by the AC Regional Director in the State in which that person operates or intends to operate. The applicant shall provide the information requested on the application form, including a valid mailing address through which the licensee or applicant can be reached at all times, and a valid premises address where animals, animal facilities, equipment, and records may be inspected for compliance. The applicant shall file the completed application form with the AC Regional Director.

Accessed here: http://ecfr.gpoaccess.gov/cgi/t/text/text-idx?idno=9;region=DIV1;....

So what about big snakes? The Illinois Supreme Court made a ruling on this in 1995 in "State v. Fabing." The best summary of this case that I can find was written by Harold W. Hannah, JD, former professor of Agriculture and Veterinary Law at University of Illinois, and published in the Southern Illinois University Law Journal in the summer of 2000. The title of the article was Survey of Illinois Law: Liability for Animal-Inflicted Injury. This paragraph sums up the Supreme Court's decision:

XII. STATUTORY PROHIBITION ON KEEPING NAMED WILD ANIMALS

At common law there was never a "one-bite" theory as a defense to liability for injury by a wild animal. One who kept such animals was presumed to know that if given an opportunity, the animals would injure persons or other animals. Obviously, some wild animals are more dangerous and threatening than others. Recognizing this, the Illinois legislature in 1969 (amended in 1986) enacted the "Illinois Dangerous Animals Act." Dangerous animals are defined as "lion, tiger, leopard, ocelot, jaguar, cheetah, margay, mountain lion, lynx, bobcat, jaguarundi, bear, hyena, wolf or coyote, or any poisonous or life-threatening reptile." The Act applies to owners and those who have custody or control over these wild animals.

Persons cannot have a property right in such animals, and they are prohibited from keeping, maintaining or having possession of such. But there are some exceptions as the rule does not apply to "a properly maintained zoological park, federally licensed exhibits, circus, scientific or educational institutions, research laboratory, veterinary hospital or animal refuge in an escape-proof enclosure." The fact that a person has "attempted to domesticate the dangerous animal" is no defense.

The Illinois Supreme Court has had some difficulty in interpreting this section of the Act due to the addition of "life-threatening" in the definition of reptiles one is prohibited from owning. In People v. Fabing, the defendants maintained that the wording of the statute was unconstitutionally vague. The Illinois Supreme Court did not agree. It recognized that this addition to the Act was necessary because there are non-poisonous reptiles capable of injuring or killing persons.

The court had no difficulty in determining that two fifteen-foot Burmese pythons owned by the defendant could injure or kill a person. But a question was raised about a seven-foot boa constrictor. This concerned the court because boa constrictors as a species can be life- threatening, but an individual snake seven-feet-long is not so regarded. The State argued that the Department of Agriculture, in enforcing provisions of the Animal Control Act, had promulgated regulations stating that a six-foot boa constrictor was life-threatening. The court held that this regulation of the Department of Agriculture did not apply to the Dangerous Animal Act.

As stated earlier, under the Animal Control Act, the determination of a dog as vicious or dangerous cannot be breed specific; but in this case the Illinois Supreme Court held that "life-threatening" reptiles can be species specific. Yet, it agreed that if a member of the species is too small to be life-threatening, then there should be no prohibition against its ownership. This departure from "species specific" apparently applies only to size and ability but not to temperament, as the court said it was not an acceptable defense to show that the reptile capable of injuring a person had a docile temperament.

The court also recognized that alligators are life-threatening but it didn't say anything about the size of the alligator. Perhaps, there is a difference between biting and constricting. The court agreed, however, that with respect to alligators, the Dangerous Animals Act is not unconstitutionally vague. But apparently the court did not believe that the law was unconstitutionally vague in a determination of when a constricting snake would become life-threatening - when the reptile reached some length between seven and fifteen feet. Although wildlife people are not afraid of baby alligators, the court did not hold that maturity of an animal had anything to do with their being defined as "life threatening."

The complete article can be found here: http://www.animallaw.info/articles/arus24silulj693.htm

I'll try to have the decision available online soon. As you can see, the Supreme Court's decision didn't entirely clarify the situation.

Title 8 of the Agriculture and Animals Administrative Code is pretty clear that no licensee in Illinois may sell a snake six feet or longer under Section 25.110 Animals Prohibited from Sale:

b) Licensees shall not offer for sale those animals the ownership of which would constitute a violation of Section 1 of the Illinois Dangerous Animals Act [720 ILCS 585/1]. These include the following animals and any hybrids thereof: lion, tiger, leopard, ocelot, jaguar, cheetah, margay, mountain lion, lynx, bobcat, jaguarundi, civet, serval, hyena, bear, wolf or coyote, or any poisonous or life- threatening reptile. A life-threatening reptile is any member of the crocodilian family or any constricting snake six feet or over in length, such as boa, python, and anaconda. This does not include any canine or feline breeds registered by the American Kennel Club, the United Kennel Club, the Cat Fancier's Association or the International Cat Association.

The complete code may be accessed here:
TITLE 8: AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS
http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/008/008parts.html

And the particular section here:
Title 8, Chapter I, subchapter b: part 25 Animal Welfare Act
Section 25.110 Animals Prohibited from Sale

http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/008/008000250001100R.html

If you're going into business, you may want to look at these rules:
PROFESSIONS AND OCCUPATIONS
(225 ILCS 605/2) Animal Welfare Act
(from Ch. 8, par. 302)

Sec. 2. Definitions. As used in this Act unless the context otherwise requires

"Pet shop operator" means any person who sells, offers to sell, exchange, or offers for adoption with or without charge or donation dogs, cats, birds, fish, reptiles, or other animals customarily obtained as pets in this State. However, a person who sells only such animals that he has produced and raised shall not be considered a pet shop operator under this Act, and a veterinary hospital or clinic operated by a veterinarian or veterinarians licensed under the Veterinary Medicine and Surgery Practice Act of 2004 shall not be considered a pet shop operator under this Act.

225 ILCS 605/3) (from Ch. 8, par. 303)

Sec. 3. (a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this Section, no person shall engage in business as a pet shop operator, dog dealer, kennel operator, cattery operator, or operate a guard dog service, an animal control facility or animal shelter or any combination thereof, in this State without a license therefor issued by the Department.

225 ILCS 605/18.1)

Sec. 18.1. Sale or gift of reptiles and other animals.

  • (a) A pet shop shall not sell a reptile, offer a reptile for sale, or offer a reptile as a gift or promotional consideration unless a notice regarding safe reptile?handling practices that meets the requirements in subsection (b) is (i) prominently displayed at each location in the pet shop where reptiles are displayed, housed, or held and (ii) distributed to the purchaser or recipient.
  • (b) The notice regarding safe reptile-handling practices shall be one of the following:
    • (1) a notice provided at no charge by the Illinois Department of Public Health; or
    • (2) a notice that has the dimensions of at least 8.5 inches by 11 inches, that uses fonts that are clearly visible and readily draw attention to the notice, and that contains all of the following statements:
      • (A) "As with many other animals, reptiles carry salmonella bacteria, which can make people sick. Safe reptile?handling steps should be taken to reduce the chance of infection."
      • (B) "Always wash your hands thoroughly after you handle your pet reptile, its food, and anything it has touched."
      • (C) "Keep your pet reptile and its equipment out of the kitchen or any area where food is prepared. Kitchen sinks should not be used to bathe reptiles or wash their dishes, cages, or aquariums. If a bathtub is used for these purposes, it should be cleaned thoroughly and disinfected with bleach."
      • (D) "Don't nuzzle or kiss your pet reptile."
      • (E) "Keep reptiles out of homes where there are children under 5 years of age or people with weakened immune systems. Children under 5 years of age or people with weakened immune systems should avoid contact with reptiles."
      • (F) "Pet reptiles should not be allowed in child care centers."
      • (G) "Pet reptiles should not be allowed to road freely throughout the home or living area." http://www.agr.state.il.us/Forms/AnimalHW/AW-1.pdf
(Source: P.A. 91-741, eff. 1-1-01.)

The full act may be accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1375&ChapAct=225%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B605%2F&ChapterID=24&ChapterName=PROFESSIONS+AND+OCCUPATIONS&ActName=Animal+Welfare+Act%2E

The application may be accessed here: http://www.agr.state.il.us/Forms/AnimalHW/AW-1.pdf

If you're thinking of buying or selling herps or breeding herps to sell, especially animals indigenous to Illinios, the Illinois statute that governs you is: (515 ILCS 5/) Fish and Aquatic Life Code. There are also federal statutes that may apply. Commerce is covered in another article.

Here's a statute that may have had bearing on a recent case of two bearded dragons. Among other things, this statute defines companion animal.

(510 ILCS 70/) Humane Care for Animals Act.

(510 ILCS 70/2.01) (from Ch. 8, par. 702.01)

Sec. 2.01.
"Animal" means every living creature, domestic or wild, but does not include man.
(Source: P.A. 78-905.)

Sec. 2.01a. Companion animal. "Companion animal" means an animal that is commonly considered to be, or is considered by the owner to be, a pet. "Companion animal" includes, but is not limited to, canines, felines, and equines.
(Source: P.A. 92-454, eff. 1-1-02.)

and may be accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1717&ChapAct=510%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B70%2F&ChapterID=41&ChapterName=ANIMALS&ActName=Humane+Care+for+Animals+Act%2E

The Department of Agriculture also has some rules for treatment of animals which seem to apply only to licensees under this act, but again, I'm no lawyer.

TITLE 8: AGRICULTURE AND ANIMALS
CHAPTER I: DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
SUBCHAPTER b: ANIMALS AND ANIMAL PRODUCTS(EXCEPT MEAT AND POULTRY INSPECTION ACT REGULATIONS)
PART 35 HUMANE CARE FOR ANIMALS ACT
Section 35.5 Definitions
"Animal" as used in this Part means any mammal, bird, fish, or reptile offered for sale, trade, or adoption or for which a service is provided by any person licensed under this Act.

These rules may be accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/008/00800035sections.html

I found a few more rules that may affect you and your herps. If your divorce is getting ugly, you should have your lawyer look at this:

FAMILIES
(750 ILCS 60/) Illinois Domestic Violence Act of 1986.
ARTICLE II
ORDERS OF PROTECTION
(11.5) Protection of animals. Grant the petitioner the exclusive care, custody, or control of any animal owned, possessed, leased, kept, or held by either the petitioner or the respondent or a minor child residing in the residence or household of either the petitioner or the respondent and order the respondent to stay away from the animal and forbid the respondent from taking, transferring, encumbering, concealing, harming, or otherwise disposing of the animal.


accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs4.asp?DocName=075000600HArt%2E+II&ActID=2100&ChapAct=750%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B60%2F&ChapterID=59&ChapterName=FAMILIES&SectionID=63195&SeqStart=500000&SeqEnd=4200000&ActName=Illinois+Domestic+Violence+Act+of+1986%2E

The next act probably means more to fur farmers than herp farmers, but if someone tries to interfere with your legal raising of animals, this act may help your case:

(510 ILCS 60/) Domesticated Wild Animals Act.

(510 ILCS 60/0.01) (from Ch. 8, par. 23y)
Sec. 0.01. Short title. This Act may be cited as the Domesticated Wild Animals Act.
(Source: P.A. 86-1324.)

(510 ILCS 60/1) (from Ch. 8, par. 24)
Sec. 1. All birds and animals ferae naturae or naturally wild, including fur bearing animals not native to this State, when raised or in domestication, or kept in enclosures and reduced to possession, are hereby declared to be objects of ownership and absolute title, the same as cattle and other property, and shall receive the same protection of law, and in the same way and to the same extent shall be the subject of trespass or theft, as other personal property.
(Source: Laws 1961, p. 2059.)

(510 ILCS 60/2) (from Ch. 8, par. 24a)
Sec. 2. When fox, rabbit, mink, chinchilla, marten, fisher, muskrat, karakul and other fur bearing animals are raised in captivity for breeding or other useful purposes (a) such animals shall be deemed domestic animals; (b) such animals and the products thereof shall be deemed agricultural products; and (c) the breeding, raising, producing or marketing of such animals or their products by the producer thereof shall be deemed an agricultural pursuit.
(Source: Laws 1949, p. 27.)

(510 ILCS 60/3) (from Ch. 8, par. 24b)
Sec. 3. The provisions of this Act shall not be held or construed to repeal or modify the provisions of the "Wildlife Code of Illinois" applicable to the breeding, raising, producing or marketing of any such birds or animals so raised in captivity. Nor shall the provisions of this Act be construed to restrict or limit the powers with reference to zoning granted by statute to cities, villages or incorporated towns either as to territory within or territory contiguous to but outside of the limits of such cities, villages or incorporated towns or to restrict or limit the powers with reference to zoning granted by statute to counties.
(Source: P.A. 81?358.)

found here: http://www.ilga.gov/legislation/ilcs/ilcs3.asp?ActID=1715&ChapAct=510%26nbsp%3BILCS%26nbsp%3B60%2F&ChapterID=41&ChapterName=ANIMALS&ActName=Domesticated+Wild+Animals+Act%2E

And lastly, if you're working on your tan or working in a tanning parlor, don't take your bearded dragon with you.

TITLE 77: PUBLIC HEALTH
CHAPTER I: DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC HEALTH
PART 795 TANNING FACILITIES CODE
SECTION 795.210 SANITATION

j) Dogs, cats, birds, reptiles and other pets shall not be permitted in tanning facilities. This exclusion does not apply to guide dogs or fish in aquariums.

Accessed here: http://www.ilga.gov/commission/jcar/admincode/077/077007950002100R.html

That's what I can find in the Illinois laws. I did a lot of searching, but I repeat that I may have missed other pertinent statutes. Let me know if I should include others on the web site. For more on laws concerning animals of all kinds through out the U.S., check out the Michigan State University College of Law's Animal Legal and Historical Web Center at: http://www.animallaw.info/

Good luck and stay legal.