Importing to US/quarantines

Posted by: Anonymous

Importing to US/quarantines - 08/14/03 11:52 PM

Does anybody know if/how I can bring my chickens to the mainland from a U.S. Commonwealth (Northern Mariana Islands)?

I have a few hens and a rooster that I've gotten quite attached to and when I return to the mainland I'd like to bring them back to me. Thanks for your help.

Some of the issues:

1) Will airlines allow you to ship them as freight, bring as a carry-on in one of those cat-carriers, or check as accompanied baggage?

2) Any quarantine restrictions. I'd have to bring them via Narita, Japan, or Honolulu.

3) Approximate costs. If it's prohibitive, I'll just find a good home for them here.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 12:58 AM

I don't know the exact laws, but (sorry, can't remember name) someone importing Serama's from Malaysia had to pay thousands for shipping and quarantine. Correct me if i'm talking rubbish! wink
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 05:36 AM

Bukbuk,you need a USDA import permit, a current health certificate from a full-time Vet and there is a 30 day quarantine at the federal facility at your expense. I'm guessing you'll be coming in via miami fla so here's their #(that'd be APHIS) (305)-526-2926. Check the APHIS website if ya got any more questions as they have the answers there, )
Posted by: Neil

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 06:41 AM

Dosent the quarentine cost alone get into the thousands? I think I would rather get new birds once I moved.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 01:15 PM

Thanks for the tips. I'll check them out. If I have to pay thousands of dollars, looks like I'm just gonna have to get some chickens when I get back.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 01:46 PM

I just checked out the website and couldn't find anything specific for bringing poultry from a U.S. commonwealth. The rumor here is that b/c I'm already in the U.S., I don't need any special permits. There's no direct flights to the mainland from here, but I can fly through Guam and Hawaii, also U.S. of course, so technically I would never leave the U.S. in getting to the mainland. I know that there aren't any special permits required for "importing" chickens here from Hawaii or even McMurray, so it would make sense if nothing's needed on the way back.

I emailed the aphis info officer and will report back if I get a reply. Thanks, everyone.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 05:03 PM

it will not cost thousands. i remember researching that and i found that is costs about 150 dollars per bird in the end after all of the vet check and such. I would just hide a few dozen eggs when i leave. but im not. lol.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/15/03 10:57 PM

Hiya Buk Buk,

I would call the airlines locally and US Dept of Agriculture or the proper agency there on the island. I bet you aren't looking at "thousands"
Maybe you can even have one in the cabin.
Good luck, Sandy and the Giggle Chix
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 09:26 AM

Hiya Gigglechix,

Yes, I'd like to take one as a carry-on. If it's possible I'll just take a hen in the cabin b/c a rooster would probably keep the whole cabin awake and there may be a mutiny on board to kill the rooster.... I'll check the airlines/usda here. A friend of mine works for TSA and he's always telling me of funny stories of finding strange things in passenger's carry on baggage, but I don't think he's ever dealt with a cabin chicken before.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 11:39 AM

perhaps someone here can tell you how to secret a rooster inside a briefcase like object?
what kind of birds do you have- maybe there are exotic and interesting bloodlines on saipan?
( hey are your birds the saipan fowl?)
Posted by: CJR

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 02:30 PM

It is not funny to try to conceal anything to bring on an airplane!!!!

I carried a pair of bantams to a Show as carry on, with 3 different connections on the way. Just happened that the "hanging" closet door was broken or they could have set the box there-- and so the box went under the seat. Had to slowly turn the box (N.E.S.T Single) on its side and the birds (in show shape) had to readjust position and not much headroom on its side! They never said a word on the entire trip, (4am to 9pm) and came out of the box ready to eat and drink when cooped at the show. (won Best of Variety Cock and Hen at a Columbus Show!). And they continued their journey to MS after the show! Large fowl would possibly need a box each--just depends on size of the birds, then 2 boxes. Charge within the U.S. is $50 for livestock carryon. At Boarding, they could not open the box to inspect the birds as they were zipstipped in and I had no spares. Might not be able to talk them through with today's inspections, but I could have worked something out to fasten the box safely, if they had insisted.
But by all means do it legally, or you may not only lose your birds, but your flight! Good luck, I am sure it can be done--might need testing for P/T and/or health inspection. CJR
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 03:59 PM

Once you get the how to worked out you may want to prepare the chickens for their flight in advance. Maybe they could nest in boxes like the ones they would be in on the plane, and maybe you could take them for car rides and stuff to get them used to this kind of thing. It may help you sort out in advance which chickens are suited temperamentally to this sort of activity and if your favorites aren't, then you have time to re-think the project.

BTW, which state will you be coming home to??

Best regards,
Sandy and the Giggle Chix
Posted by: CJR

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 06:23 PM

Actually, practice isn't needed. In a shipping box, it is just a LONG "nighttime" trip for them regardless of time of day, as it is dark in the box and they doze and sleep. The flight and travel is no worse than a stormy night. They do not eat or drink en route and are just fine. The Express Mail of our birds within the U.S. is often 2-4 days from day of departure to day of arrival--an apple in the box or some other approved fruit will tide them over any delays. Shipping birds or carrying them, is no big deal for the birds. We are the ones who worry ourselves about it!!CJR
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/16/03 07:10 PM

This is from the Armed Forces regs for military personel returning to the states from Northern Mariana Island [and others]. I think the same would apply to civilians. 30 day quarantine, at least. Same from PR, my daughter just got back from there.
There are controls, restrictions, and prohibitions on the entry of animals, birds, turtles, wildlife, and endangered species. Cats and dogs must be free of evidence of diseases communicable to man. Vaccination against rabies is not required for cats, or for dogs arriving from rabies﷓free countries. Personally owned pet birds may be entered (limit of two if of the Psittacine family), but Animal & Plant Health Inspection Services (APHIS) and Public Health Service requirements must be met, including quarantine at any APHIS facility at specified locations, at the owner's expense. Advance reservations are required. Primates, such as monkeys, apes, and similar animals, may not be imported. If you plan to take your pet abroad or import one on your return, obtain a copy of our brochure, Pets and Wildlife.
getting them through Honolulu is not possible at all.
Janet Tallon
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/17/03 04:05 PM

Thanks, Metadrjay, for the military info. Too bad about Honolulu -- I know they're pretty strict with fruit and vegetables and it makes sense that they're just as strict with pets. I'm going back to California (San Francisco Bay Area) eventually but that will be next fall at the earliest. There I'll have to deal with the predators almost everyone here has already dealt with - 'coons, hawks, possum, dogs, cats and rats. Here on Saipan it's just cats, rats ("Saipan Rabbits"), kingfishers, dogs, and poultry rustlers.

Incubator, no, I don't have the Saipan fowl. I'm not quite sure I know what they look like, but if they're the fighting cocks that lots of people here raise, then yeah, I have seen them. But I think most of those are of Asian stock that came from the the U.S. mainland before shipping them interstate became illegal. There are a few local roosters that try to cavort with my hens all day though. About 3-4 lbs. each with golden hackles and tail with brown speckled feathers every else. My hens are, I think, RIReds crossed with NHReds b/c they have the RI rust color in their bodies but somewhat dark tails. I have one hen that is more of a light rust/golden color with a few white flecks. I bred them with a "pure" RIR rooster and now have two 3 month old chickens, hen-hatched but I raised them, both light red-golden. One is very rooster looking (heavier body, long yellow legs, larger comb than sister, always trying to protect) and one definitely is a hen (small comb). I bred the mothers just recently with another RIR rooster, and came out with mostly corn-yellow chicks with diffuse patches of light brown. Inexplicably, at least to me, one of the chicks is dark brown with much larger eyes and a line of feathers running down its legs to its ankles (one of the dead in shell eggs was dark brown too). This really surprised me b/c none of my chickens have legwarmers, until now. I don't think it was a local rooster that got to me hens either b/c I haven't seen anything on the island even remotely having legwarmers. If I brought any chickens home, it would be from the first two chicks I raised, and maybe a few from this new clutch, including the brown one with legwarmers.

Haven't heard from the APHIS contact personnel, but thankfully I think I have enough information here from everyone to get started.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/19/03 11:25 PM

Well, I never hear back from the APHIS people, but with a bit of navigation through their website I came up with this information:

Importing Live Poultry

Import Procedures for Importing Live Poultry

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) defines poultry to include chickens, doves, ducks, geese, grouse, guinea fowl, partridges, pea fowl, pheasants, pigeons, quail, swans, and turkeys. All birds of these species are subject to the import requirements for poultry, and are not considered by the USDA to be pet birds.


30-day quarantine at a USDA Animal Import Center

Animal Import Permit

Veterinary Health Certificate issued by a full-time salaried veterinarian of the agency responsible for animal health of the national government of the exporting country

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Certification
Import Procedures (from all countries except Canada)

All poultry must be quarantined for a minimum of 30 days at a USDA Animal Import Center. The poultry must also be accompanied by a USDA import permit, issued prior to shipment of the birds. The importer must contact a USDA Animal Import Center to apply for the import permit and reserve quarantine space in the facility. The addresses for the USDA Animal Import Centers are listed below.

New York Animal Import Center
200 Drury Lane
Rock Tavern, NY 12575 (845) 564-2950 (phone) (845) 564-1075 (fax)

Miami Animal Import Center
5600 NW 36th Street, Room 560
Miami, FL 33126 (305) 526-2926 (phone) (305) 526-2929 (fax)

Los Angeles Animal Import Center
11850 South La Cienega Boulevard
Hawthorne, CA 90250 (310) 725-1970 (phone) (310) 725-9119 (fax)

The poultry must be accompanied by a current veterinary health certificate issued within 30 days of importation and endorsed by a full-time salaried veterinarian of the agency responsible for animal health of the national government of the exporting country. The health certificate must be translated into English.
The poultry must be inspected by a USDA port veterinarian at the first U.S. port of entry. The importer must arrange for this inspection at least 72 hours in advance by contacting the USDA port veterinarian at the telephone number listed on the import .
The importer must retain the services of a customs broker to facilitate the importation and, in some cases, to transport the poultry from the port of entry to the USDA Animal Import Center. The importer should contact the Import Center for a list of customs brokers to provide these services.
During the quarantine period, all poultry will be tested to determine if they are free of certain communicable diseases of poultry. The cost for this diagnostic testing will be charged to the importer and is separate from the quarantine fee.
Total payment of the quarantine and diagnostic testing fees is required when the import permit application is submitted. The payment amount will be provided to the importer by the USDA Animal Import Center. The daily user fee rate for standard care, feed, and handling of poultry quarantined in a USDA Animal Import Center is as follows:
Doves, pigeons, quail $ 3.25
Chickens, ducks, grouse, guinea fowl, partridge, pea fowl, pheasants $ 6.00
Large poultry and waterfowl (game cocks, geese, swans, turkey) $ 14.00

Poultry Import from Canada

Poultry imported from Canada into the United States are not required to be quarantined. However, the poultry must be accompanied by a veterinary health certificate issued within 30 days of importation and endorsed by a full-time salaried veterinarian of the Canadian government. The poultry must be inspected by a USDA veterinarian at the first U.S. port of entry.

An import permit is not required for poultry imported from Canada through a U.S. - Canadian land border port. However, if the poultry enters the United States through an airport, an import permit is required.

This permit may be downloaded from the Internet at or by contacting us:
National Center for Import and Export
4700 River Road, Unit 39
Riverdale, MD 20737
(301) 734-3277 telephone
(301) 734-6402 fax

Fish and Wildlife Service Permit Information

In the United States, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) regulates the importation of birds protected by the Convention on International trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and the Wild Bird Conservation Act of 1992 (WBCA). These regulations are part of international conservation effort to protect exotic wild birds subject to trade. Most exotic pet birds including parrots, parakeets, macaws, lories, and cockatoos are affected by CITES and the WBCA. However, the budgerigar, cockatiel, and rose-ringed parakeet are exempt.

According to the WBCA, in order to import a pet bird of non-U.S. origin into the United States, you must have continuously resided outside of the United States for at least one year. In addition, the WBCA limits the number of pet birds that can be imported to two birds per person, per year. All required WBCA and CITES permits must accompany the bird while in transit.

Please visit the FWS web site at: to obtain more information and the permit application. If you have questions you can contact the FWS at (800) 358-2104. Overseas calls should be placed to (703) 358-2104.
Posted by: Anonymous

Re: Importing to US/quarantines - 08/20/03 06:24 PM

Yeah but..... Are you really "importing since you are coming thru the Marianas? Janet said Honolulu is out but what about if the birds aren't offloaded there?

Sandy and the Giggle Chix