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Ant invasion: How pets become pests

By Megan Frederickson, Associate Professor of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto
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When I was a teenager, I volunteered in the rainforest exhibit at an aquarium. A few times a week, we’d get a phone call from someone looking to donate a pet that they could no longer care for. Mostly turtles and frogs. The occasional parrot. Once, a retired dancer wanted to find a new home for two boa constrictors that had been part of her act.

But the aquarium could not take all the animals it was offered, and I often wondered what happened to all those unwanted pets. Many likely found new homes, but some were probably released into local parks or ponds, unfortunately.

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