Legal trading of wild caught reptiles

Discussion in 'Australian Snakes' started by mje772003, Mar 29, 2014.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Ramy

    Ramy Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2006
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Illawarra
    That's coming close to getting personal. Please keep it cool.

    That's a nice romantic sentiment. The only reason I'd put my money on wild caught animals surviving is learned behaviour. This is a very complicated topic and involves far more than just genes and instinct. A captive animal has a lower chance of surviving parasites, however I'm inclined to believe a wild animal is more likely to have lasting health problems from being exposed to them to begin with. Assuming we're ignoring morphs, the differences in genes and appearance aren't nescessarily pronounced enough to make a captive animal unviable in the wild.

    On the matter of feeding, I only have experience with captive animals however I've had animals who'll pick up a meal and swallow without a second thought but if you deprive food for a while they'll go straight back to coil and kill. This combined with the variety of accounts given above leads me to believe that there are many factors, including but not limited to whether the prey needs killing and how hungry the predator is.

    The trouble with moral arguements (and this IS a moral arguement) is that they're emotional and hard to prove one way or the other. Being uncomfortable with something doesn't make it wrong. If there was a scientific way to prove beyond a doubt which animals are 'stressed' or 'in pain', then we'd have something to go on. But the best evidence we have is whether they eat, poop, shed and breed like they're expected to. If an animal takes time to adjust, but then seems to settle when they decide that they're not going to be predated upon, then that's a good sign that it's not distressed by being in a 'small' enclosure. Providing individual specimens show no signs of stress, my only concern is the impact on wild populations. Show me evidence that wild caught animals are stressed, and I'll gladly change my mind. Until then, I'm happy to see wild animals being brought into captivity.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2014
  2. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane
    Maybe so.
    But my opinion stems from a real concern. Your opinion doesnt serve to do anything other than 'wait and see'.

    I truly believe it will be proveable. Itll just take time is all. Much like everything else that has ever been ignored or underestimated and proven to be, in the end..........more than just an opinion.
     
  3. cement

    cement Subscriber Subscriber APS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Messages:
    3,904
    Likes Received:
    176
    Location:
    on the coast
    No worries Sean, its all good.
    I am not actually putting forward a hypothesis, just general points. I am always interested in being educated, but if you want to educated me, then i'll need more than just a line saying that its my right to ignore scientific evidence and logic.

    Also, how can you put 10 wild against 10 captive, anyday of the week? Is there a test that you know of that can be done that the 10 captives will fail, and the 10 wild will triumph?

    Are there any scientific studies with results that pertain specifically to snakes, that you have done/studied or read that make you beleive what you are trying to educate us on ?

    When or what time frame would you consider that we will lose our wild snakes?

    I am quite aware of the local population and its stronghold in my local shire because I am a local snake catcher, which is 50-50 suburbia and native bush. But the rest of Aus is HUGE and I seriously doubt that wild snakes are in trouble

    Quote"The point im making is that, yes it may be youre right to feel as though nothing is wrong, and your actions arent potentially harmful.....but its the future that will prove yet another string of mistakes has been made, and only then will something be done........futile attempts to rectify a problem that will no longer be solveable.

    We wont have any of the species we have today. Who knows what we'll have."

    I don't know Sean, I could have made that example from any one of any species i have bred not just the spotted, but can you correctly elaborate on what harm I am doing, without knowing me and my collection? You won't see a change of species in your lifetime.
     
  4. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane
    Firstly, there is never only one reason for anything.
    And when did morphs become something other than a reptile. Morphs are entirley involved in this discussion. Nothing could be more to the point.
    They are exactly an example of what can and will go wrong with genetic manipulation without regard for the animal or its viability as a creature that can survive of its on accord.
    Every time you breed a captive animal with a wild animal, the offspring are both better versions of captives and worse versions of wild animals. But that last part is my opinion, for now.

    And I think youre missing the point (or maybe I am). These last few points have moved from 'should be take animals from the wild?' to 'Is there a negative difference between captive bred animals and wild animals of the same species?'. Different, I know. But it happened nonetheless.

    Even so, although you think it is a moral argument from your point of view, doesnt change the fact that from my point of view, the sustainability of wild populations is very scientific. Im afraid youve missed the point again if you truly think we are simply tossing around 'feelings' here. This is about the scientific opinions (yes, i said it) of those concerned, or not concerned as it would seem, about the well being of wild reptiles.
     
  5. Snowman

    Snowman Guest

    Sean what is your background in zoology/biology etc? Only asking because a lot if your posts are opinion other than fact. Since you are a new member here we don't know much about you and your experience, as opposed to older forum members we know on and off the forum through friends and reptile societies.
     
  6. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane
    Put 10 wild snakes and 10 neuro Jags in the wild. Youll see what Im talking about.


    I need only ask you to look at any number of species in the world that are no longer with us and then ponder what may have become of them had some forthought been had.

    This is exactly the problem, Im afraid. 'It wont matter what I do, Im only an individual in a HUGE world'. No-one seems to be able to think ahead, nor care what happens unless it happens in THEIR lifetime. The world will be around alot longer than any of us here today. However, I guarantee you, ALL reptiles in general will eventually be lost if we continue the way we are headed. If you need convincing of that, or cant fathom it, youre unlikely to grasp any further concepts on conservation.

    I dont mean to point you out as doing harm. I dont remember saying 'Cement, stop harming your reptiles'. Haha.
    I merely aim to suggest that any actions that take a species genetically away from its natural ancestors is completely ridding any opportunity to save said speices when the time comes. If youre happy to have sunglows and jags, Albino beardeds and hypo thicktails as the only surviving reptiles in 200 years, then thats ok. I guess.

    I know my examples here are all morphs, but you clearly need examples of what genetic manipulation will lead to. Thats whats in store for all captives at some point.
     
  7. cement

    cement Subscriber Subscriber APS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Messages:
    3,904
    Likes Received:
    176
    Location:
    on the coast
    What I clearly need, is for you to produce something tangible, instead of assumptions.
     
  8. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane
    My background doesnt include a qualification on a piece of paper. While Id love to say that I was a successful herpetologist, that simply isnt what happened. A great majority of posts on forums are opinion. If they were already fact, they probably wouldnt need arguing now would they.
    For the sake of your interest and getting know each other (which is good), Ive been keeping reptiles for 15 years. My reptiles live in naturalistic enclosures or outdoor pits, they are fed irregularily on a variety of foods from a variety of sources. Ive spent a great deal of my life observing and capturing wild reptiles. Ive watched their behaviour with intrigue and find them equally as facinating as anyone here.
    I dont need to be a memebr of a reptile society to be of value, nor do I need to have befriended well known reptile enthusiasts to be able to see where the state of things is headed.
    I know of many keepers fed up with the infighting, greed and jealousy of many reptiles keepers in todays hobby-come-industry. Id prefer to stay clear of those individuals if possible. My interest is in reptiles and their study. Not hybrids, or mass breeding for money nor in competing with other keepers for the 'best'. I simply respect and appreciate reptiles. Always have and always will.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Mammoths. Really?

    Nearly 60 species of animal have become extinct in Australia since settlement. How about we lose the sarcasm and ignorance and look at one of them.

    Also, my comments are no more assumptive than anyone elses.
    Its so easy to convince people that nothing is wrong or that they dont need to change anything.
    Its far, far harder to encourage someone to consider something theyve not already.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2014
  9. Focus

    Focus Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2010
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    This topic really should have its own thread. Some people will overlook an interesting discussion on genetics because of title.


    I can't comment on the veracity of that comment Sean, I'm not educated enough in this area. However it seems that you've made a few assumptions. There are still some breeders concerned with not only keeping species pure but also keeping localities pure. Not at all people are interested in jags or crosses (I'm not). Whether that's worth anything to wild populations is up for debate, as the pet trade really isn't conservation based currently. But I gather you believe that keeping lines pure isn't good enough anyway due to genetic weaknesses from inbreeding?

    Also, why are you under the impression that reptiles will disappear in 200 years? Wild collection? Habitat destruction? What is that based on?

    I think most of us are concerned and can understand the need for conversation into the future, I'm just a bit more blurry about what it is you think should be done.
     
  10. jahan

    jahan Active Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2009
    Messages:
    253
    Likes Received:
    0
    [MENTION=40131]Sean_L[/MENTION], What license do you have that allows you to catch wild reptiles?
     
  11. Stevo2

    Stevo2 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2009
    Messages:
    791
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Out Back
    I don't think that irresponsible breeding by herpers provides justification to collect more pure species from the wild. Surely that should be an argument against, not for.....
     
  12. Ramy

    Ramy Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2006
    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Illawarra
    I went back to review the thread and realised my error. The downside of reading a whole thread all at once and then replying to it is that you usually end up replying to the whole thread, not to individual posts. My error is in not clarifying that some of my post was in reply specifically to yours, and that the second 2 paragraphs were my response to the whole conversation.

    No one is pretending that morphs are viable in the wild, they scream "hey kookaburras, over here". That's why I felt it nescessary to define my terms. You're making the mistake of assuming that all captive breeding is taking wild animals in the direction of neuro jags. I personally believe it is possible to keep captive reptiles with an intent of keeping them as similar as possible to their wild counterparts. And you don't need to constantly introduce wild stock to do it. A diamond python that's several generations captive, even with a little carpet accidentally mixed in by the lay breeders, can be hard to tell from a wild caught diamond python. (not impossible, maybe, but hard). So beyond looking at the circumstances of an individual's growth and development, how can you have enough evidence to speculate what will survive and what won't?

    Furthermore, there are many species of animal, such as the blue tongue lizard, which have proven to have stable populations in urbanised environments. Therefore your opinion that all reptiles will become extinct in the next 200 years seems unfounded. Many, sure. But not all.

    When we go beyond the scope of the evidence available to us, all that is left is theory. When you form opinions based on that theory, especially in regard to "right and wrong", all we are left with is morals. I believe we have reached the point that there is insufficient evidence available to us.
     
  13. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane

    Thats a fair enough comment focus. I admit that none of us are geneticists. But remarkably often is something discovered by someone who wasnt an 'insert proffession'. An open, less educated mind can be far more useful than a closed, educated one in terms of discovery.
    I am glad that there are members of the hobby that are still interested in the 'pure' reptiles. I applaud that. I really do. However, its the idea that reptile keeping is just a pet trade that is disappointing. We have an opportunity to do more than simlpy enjoy these animals/ make money from them.
    Why do I think they'll disappear? Because they already are. Ive spent more than enough time around wild populations to see decline. While yes, most species have a foothold in ranges beyond the reach of humans, the reach of humans is ever expanding. Perhaps the average person doesnt realise what the current growth rate is really like.
    With what has already been wiped out, i find it hard to see why people arent quick to agree that each and every animal will be at risk unless it can survive in a concrete backyard.

    As for what can be done. I dont have the answers. Im only one person. But if I know anything, its that ignorance and disimissal are exactly what SHOULDNT be done in terms of conservation in the future. Itll take more than an individual to change anything for the better.
     
  14. cement

    cement Subscriber Subscriber APS Veteran

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2007
    Messages:
    3,904
    Likes Received:
    176
    Location:
    on the coast
    What do you want mate? Talk about infighting!
    You said ANY number of species IN THE WORLD!!

    You want to be rude about the way you present your opinions, all I am asking for is some evidence that backs up your point.

    I understand where your coming from, you love the native herps. Well so do I, and I work with them, so I put my money where my mouth is. What do you do as far as wild native animals go? Are you working with them, or are you just sitting on a computer, predicting doomsday like the freaks of past days that used to wear big signs around their necks?

    I'll mirror back to you what you give me ok, so if you want me to stop the rudeness then you stop being condescending and we'll get on fine.

    Actually, I have a family to cook dinner for now, so you enjoy your evening sean.
     
  15. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane

    Absolutely. Youve miss-understood me. As i said, earlier, I think the topic has changed a little.
    Im for the protection of wild populations through the investment in the keeping of as pure as possible lineages in captivity. I dont propose the continual collection of wild animals, merely the protection of the genes of precaptured individuals/

    - - - Updated - - -

    THIS. COMPLETELY THIS. I agree. Thats all I want. Focus on sustainable husbandry that protects the species. I apologise if it seems Im suggesting that wild animals are required to make this work, that was not my intention. Again....against excessive removal of animals from the wild.

    I disagree. The 'aussie backyard', a wonderous place where animals thrive and one can mow a lawn, is a myth in a place like New York city or London. Our country is VERY young. Look at any new housing development and tell me you honestly think it could sustain a population of bluetongues.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Youve taken it far too personally mate. Im not out to attack you. Any negativity is purely 'misrepresented dismay' at an age old case of refusal to see that things may be different. I apologise, sincerley. My rudeness is only frustration.
    Im no doomsayer, I assure you. But I am a cynic. People like John Walmsley, who had the right idea, but approached the public in the wrong way have been trying to change things for years. Whether it be rudeness, a giant sign, a cat hat or a full blown riot, sometimes it takes something extra to try and get a point across. Thats just how it is with people.
    I too am off to have dinner. Mine is take away fish and chips however, so points to you there.
     
  16. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,861
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Marsden
    Maybe we should introduce international captive bred species if they do not have the instincts to survive in the wild. I think that captive snakes are resilient enough and learn well enough to not only survive but to also thrive.
     
  17. Sean_L

    Sean_L Not so new Member

    Joined:
    Mar 27, 2014
    Messages:
    98
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Qld, Brisbane
    Thats not a helpful statement now is it. Maybe we should make everyone smoke, because youre not necessary going to die from it. It doesnt help the conversation at all.
    While I agree that a majority of captive snakes could very well survive, I also state that there are numerous that couldnt, for whatever reason, be it colour and pattern, inability to feed correctly or because theyre just neurologically stagnant.

    I simply propose that without care, this may befall any captive reptile species in the coming decades. If you cant see that, I cant help you.
    Downright refusing a proposal takes no intelligence at all.
     
  18. andynic07

    andynic07 Very Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    3,861
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Marsden
    I simply feel that your thought about captive snakes not doing well in the wild is incorrect and made a little joke about it in lieu of a long winded post. There are many reasons that I think they will not only survive but will thrive and international species escaping and taking hold is only one of them. You make the point that there will be a lot of genetically weaker animals may die from a captive clutch in the wild but I feel that happens with wild clutches the same. Unless a species of wild snake is expanding then on average only one offspring from every snake needs to survive to keep the population stable. You can insinuate that myself or any others are not intelligent if you wish but that too does not bring credibility to your argument.
     
  19. champagne

    champagne Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2013
    Messages:
    600
    Likes Received:
    1
    the gene pool argument is total bs... how many Oenpelli are being collected? The biggest threat to Australian wildlife as a whole is habitat destruction, not legal or illegal collecting.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2014
  20. butters

    butters Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2008
    Messages:
    647
    Likes Received:
    8
    Location:
    Brisbane
    I live in a relatively new housing estate, around 10 years. We built the house on what was a dairy farm but the surrounding area has been suburbia for 40+ years with a state forest bordering the edge of the suburb on two sides.

    In the first 18 months I saw virtually no reptiles. Now I have resident populations of GW skinks and water dragons. By resident populations I mean a core group of about 20 adult GWSand about 6 permanent adult water dragons. During spring and summer that population swells to 3 times that until the young disperse. We also have resident YF whip snakes, green tree snakes, Burton's, various small skink species (at least 7), marsh snakes, keel backs, pink tongues, bearded dragons, the occasional Lacie, carpet snake, major skink, kreft's, white crown, gold crown, brown tree and guess what? Blue tongues have moved in over the last couple of years. Now we have 3 pretty much permanent residents with a handful of offspring which come and go.

    I grew up in this suburb and can confidently say that the native reptile fauna is greater around here now than it was 40 years ago. I have been keeping reptiles and actively herping in the area for that long so am in a position to make an informed observation.

    The only reptiles I have seen a decline in are the larger elapids. As a kid I regularly found adders, RBB's and the occasional eastern brown. Now I only see a couple of browns and rbb's each year. The adders are gone but I can find them within 1km of my house along with a ridiculous number of other species.

    So yes I think I can confidently say that after 40+ years on and off of living in this suburb and now living in a new housing estate in that suburb that reptiles (in particular blue tongues ) can survive and even thrive in suburbia with a few exceptions.

    My grandfather lives on a street parallel to Petrie Terrace in town. This is within 2km of the centre of Brisbane. His house has been there for over 100 hundreds years ( he was born in the house) and guess what? There is a resident population of blue tongues that lives in his yard and they've been there at least since I was a young child. My dad says they have been there since he was a kid. So they have been there over 70 years. He also gets water dragons, carpets, green trees, tenuis, GWS all within throwing distance of the CBD.

    To say that native reptiles can't survive in suburbia is I believe quite misguided, blatantly wrong and suggests a very narrow point of view. Maybe mine is narrow too.

    They can and do thrive, at least here in Brisbane. I can sit on my step, in a newish housing estate, and see more species than I see on some herping trips that last days. Maybe they are not flashy reptick species but they are pretty cool non the less.
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page