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No Tigers Allowed
Wild and dangerous animals banned in the village
July 13, 2020

T
own Manager Diane Miller went to work Saturday morning for the express purpose of sending out a single email. It announced a Special Town Board Meeting for the following Monday at 9a, for a proposed amendment to the General Ordinance. Such changes are usually made at the monthly Town Board Meeting. But then regular town ordinances are rarely about the keeping of exotic and potentially dangerous animals.

Friday afternoon, a call came into Town Hall from Dr. Forbes at the Department of Agriculture. Someone was looking to get an exhibition license. Town Hall originally thought it might be about some of the more unusual animals that call Dolphin Point home.

No Tigers Allowed
In October, 2018, Plum Smiley (a longhorn steer) took a walk around Dolphin Point while his enclosure was being repaired.
No Tigers Allowed
In 2019, an emu – from the same farm as Plum Smiley – was spotted wandering Dolphin Point.

But these animals are covered under the livestock provisions in Oriental’s General Ordinance. The animal Dr. Forbes was asking about was a tiger.

It was unknown if the enquiring person was a resident of Oriental or looking to move here. Either way, they wanted to house and display a tiger within the town limits. And they gave an address to the Department of Agriculture: 414 Whittaker Point Rd.

That property is a pool and half a clubhouse owned by the Whittaker Creek Yacht Owners Association. The other half of the clubhouse – and much of the surrounding property – is owned by Knute Bysheim of Whittaker Creek Yacht Harbor. It is suspected that the address given to Dr. Forbes may have been false; a pool and clubhouse frequented by live-aboards and visitors is not a likely place to house a tiger.

No Tigers Allowed
Perhaps not what you want to see when out for a walk in the neighborhood.

At this morning’s meeting, Town Manager Miller told the Board that “North Carolina is one of four states that allows exotic animals unless you have an ordinance against it.” The town’s lawyer sent over standard language defining ‘wild and dangerous animals’ and outlawing their keeping within town limits.

Commissioner Martin Barrow asked that further language be added detailing the associated fines and defining a time frame for removal.

All Commissioners unanimously agreed to add the additional language to the General Ordinance.

Effective immediately, lions, tigers, and (kept) bears are not allowed within Oriental town limits.

Your cat Whiskers is still OK.

Related Information
Animal Ordinance Amendment

Posted Monday July 13, 2020 by Allison DeWeese


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