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Federal agencies (such as Customs and Border Protection and the Animal Plant and Health Inspection Service) oversee inspections at U.S. ports of entry to protect U.S. agriculture from pests and diseases.
The United States legally imported more than 1 billion live animals from 2005 through 2008. With increased trade and travel, zoonotic diseases (transmitted between animals and humans) and animal diseases can emerge anywhere and spread rapidly.
GAO reviewed the Fish and Wildlife Service's (FWS) procedures for disposing of property which is forfeited or abandoned because of a lack of a permit or documentation required for its import into the United States. This property includes some live endangered species and other restricted items.