Deadly Snakes Found in the Post as Authorities Bust Native Reptile Smuggling Racket

Discussion in 'Reptile News' started by Nero Egernia, Aug 25, 2017.

  1. Nero Egernia

    Nero Egernia Subscriber Subscriber

    Aug 10, 2015
    Likes Received:
    Western Australia
    Deadly Snakes Found in the Post as Authorities Bust Native Reptile Smuggling Racket.

    A highly venomous death adder and 93 other native reptiles have been seized in the post in Western Australia after smugglers unsuccessfully tried to send them interstate for sale on the black market.

    Six parcels containing the animals — destined for New South Wales — were intercepted by wildlife officers last week in Kalgoorlie, in the state's Goldfields region.

    The horde also included other venomous snakes like the mulga (also known as king brown) and the whip snake, as well as barking geckos, Stimson's pythons and bobtail lizards.

    The animals were placed in plastic containers, but five were either dead by the time the parcels were intercepted or have since died.

    The reptiles could have attracted up to $150,000 on the black market, the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions (DBCA) said.

    Wildlife officer Matt Swan said 21 different reptile species were recovered before they could be sold illegally.

    "The reptiles have come from locations across WA, including the Wheatbelt, Goldfields, Midwest and Pilbara," he said.

    "It is cruel and inhumane to export reptiles through the post.

    "These reptiles are subject to rough and tumble, extreme temperatures — [it can get] quite cold, can also get quite hot — and this has a detrimental effect on their health and can kill them."

    Mr Swann said the plastic containers were not secure.

    "We have highly venomous reptiles inside and these things can and have escaped in the past," he said.
    "They pose a real threat and risk to the people involved in the transport and handling of these packages, and that can have fatal consequences."

    Nobody has been charged in connection with the failed smuggling attempt.

    However, the DBCA said the investigation was continuing.

    Mr Swann described the seizure as significant.

    "This is certainly up there with one of the larger seizures that I've been involved with in my 11 years as a wildlife officer. This would be in the top five," he said.

    People caught taking protected fauna in WA previously faced a fine of $4,000 per species.

    But under new laws passed last year, that penalty has increased to up to $20,000 per species.

    The DBCA said the new penalties would help deter wildlife crimes and protect native animals.
    Last edited: Aug 25, 2017
  2. Prof_Moreliarty

    Prof_Moreliarty Subscriber Subscriber

    Oct 10, 2014
    Likes Received:
    Clowns... it makes you wonder wether the laws need revision..the market is only there due to the law,why not let captive bred animals or government captive bred animals (politicians love money) be sold to other country's/states? For a fraction of the price? Smugglers would soon move on as there would be no incentive anymore.
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2017
  3. ronhalling

    ronhalling Subscriber Subscriber

    Nov 27, 2012
    Likes Received:
    Port Macquarie NSW
    I am having trouble trying to fathom why someone would bother to try and smuggle a "Death Adder" into N.S.W. seeing as we already have the most spectacular colorations of that particular species here at our own finger tips. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) -ronhalling-
    pinefamily and Pauls_Pythons like this.
  4. Yellowtail

    Yellowtail Subscriber Subscriber

    Jan 6, 2017
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    Hard to see how the reptiles described could be worth much if sold off licence in NSW, probably barely enough to cover the cost of collection and certainly not worth the risk of fines or worse. More likely the intention was to smuggle them overseas or are they just very stupid people.
    Pauls_Pythons likes this.
  5. SpottedPythons

    SpottedPythons Well-Known Member

    May 13, 2017
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    Galston, NSW
    Doesn't seem like a very well-written news article... seems to be try to hype up a lot of stuff, with implications that all the venomous animals are dangerous, like whipsnakes. Not good for public acceptance towards snakes in general...

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