Target: Donald Schultz
Goal: Condemn host of Animal Planet show for violating the Endangered Species Act
Animal Planet’s “Wild Recon” host allegedly attempted to sell two Iranian dessert monitor lizards to an undercover U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service agent in 2010. Donald Schultz was charged with violating the Endangered Species Act. Special Agent Lisa C. Nichols said Shultz’s employee, Michael Clarkson, gave her a list of lizards Shultz was trying to sell on Facebook, including the lizards for $2,500. The criminal complaint filed recently in Los Angeles said they negotiated the price and the lizards were sent to another undercover agent by Delta Air Cargo in Buffalo, N.Y.
On his now-canceled show, Schultz would parachute into remote locations to take biological samples from deadly snakes and other dangerous animals. Part of the show’s premise was that these deadly animal’s venom could be brought back to the United States and researched to find an anti-venom to protect the public. Critics found that it was too Bear Grylls-esque, and had been done before.
If convicted of the misdemeanor, Schultz faces one year in prison and a $100,000 fine. His television show, “Wild Recon”, on Animal Planet, was cancelled before the incident came to light.
Schultz is clearly not what he was made out to be and is not an appropriate host for an Animal Planet show, where thousands of people tune in to watch him battle a venomous lace monitor or a similarly dangerous creature. Condemn him for violating the Endangered Species Act as well as the public’s trust.
Dear Donald Schultz,
As a herpetologist and Animal Planet host, one would hope that you had more respect for wildlife than to sell it to the highest bidder. However, that is exactly what you tried to do with two Iranian desert monitor lizards in 2010. Not only is this morally ambiguous, it is also illegal. You are in direct violation of the Endangered Species Act, which does not allow the sale of endangered wildlife without a permit.
A man in your elevated position should know better than to use wildlife to get ahead. You not only violated the Endangered Species Act, you violated the public’s trust.
[Your Name Here]