Exotic animals stolen from Hernando County sanctuary

Several exotic animals have gone missing from a zoo attraction in Hernando County.

The owners of Boyett’s Grove and Citrus Attraction say six animals were stolen from their enclosures over the weekend.

According to Kathy Oleson, two bearded dragons, a Moluccan cockatoo, a Goffin’s cockatoo, a Senegal parrot, and an African spurred tortoise are nowhere to be found.

“It is very disappointing,” said Oleson, who fears the animals won’t receive the care they need.

“Routine is very, very important, and once you change their routine, that stresses animals, and some of the older ones, just the stress will cause them, sometimes, to get sick,” said Oleson.

The tourist attraction is home to all kinds of animals, including camels and zebras.

The owners say most of the animals were donated by people who could not take care of them anymore. The zoo does not sell or buy them.

Oleson says she is a forgiving person and is willing to take the stolen animals back, no questions asked.

“I’m hoping somebody would please, if they know who’s got them, please, just tell us,” said Oleson. “Just bring them back, if they just bring them back, nothing will be said.”

The Hernando County Sheriff’s Office did not provide any information aside from stating it is an “active investigation.”