Discussion in 'General Reptile Discussion' started by kingofnobbys, Apr 9, 2016.
I check gumtree .
Reptiles Downunder, Gumtree, here, and occasionally Herptrader. If I have no luck, I do a search on the forum for people who have mentioned a particular species, and then I contact them to see what they have available.
Gumtree, reptiles downunder, here, facebook sometimes. I also check with breeders I have made contact with in the past to see what new stuff they have available esspecially if they have a large variety of animals.
To those that are selling what I want.
That isn't always through classifieds.
I can't remember the last time I actually bought a reptile. It probably would have been in the late 90's when I had no choice but to purchase a couple of Adders and Tais because I needed them for demonstrations for a live reptile show that I used to own and operate with my wife. Other than that it was probably when I was a kid abut 50 years ago. Even then I prefered to swap specimens when I could, even with people interstate.
I know I'm a dinosaur, but I have mixed feeling toward the idea of a the current commercial trend with reptiles. I don't like where it is apparent that it is open to exploitation by some people solely for the purpose of commercial gain and where it has encouraged poaching for profit. I also know that as a result of the expansion of the hobby these days that the only option open to those who want to start or build a collection, without having a detrimental effect on wild populations, is to purchase animals, and have no problems with those with a genuine interest in the breeding and supplying quality animals. I also must say that I do like what is happening with the various colour morphs that are being produced.
I'll admit that I have sold reptiles in the past but at no time was it for profit, it was always to either help finance or cover the costs of collecting expeditions. It was a time in Australia when reptiles were not freely available through captive breeding and if you wanted to collect them then there was no choice but to get out and about to the localities they were found. Often this would involve nearly every weekend away from home and one or two annual trips over a couple of weeks travelling distances of a couple of thousand kilometres. It turns out that other than collecting specimens, the real advantage of this in the long run was the ability to gain an understanding of their ecology. I have known plenty of academics over the years who have completed all the theory in biology, environmental science and even zoology who have no understanding of reptiles in their natural habitat. This just endorses in me the fact that you can read and learn all you want about the subject but there is no learning experience like that of being involved with field work first hand.
I suppose I'd say "what goes around comes around".
Over the years I've swapped, been given and given away stuff like Hops, Adders, Tais, Inland Tais, Mulgas, Spotter Blacks, Olives, Black Headed's, Children's, Womas, all types of Morelia, different species of small elapids, Ackies, Tristis, Lacies, Sandies, countless species of dragons and geckoes and a hell of a lot of the larger skinks.
Even these days I still get offered a lot of stuff from friends. Most recent included some Womas, 2 pairs of Black Headed Pythons, a couple of Scrubbies, a couple of RBB's, a couple of different colour phases of Ackies and a Diamond. Except for the Ackies (that my wife wanted) I knocked them all back because I just did't have the time or space for them.
Sorry if I've gone off thread but I just thought that I'd put my feelings and experience on the topic to paper here rather than start a new one.
Hmm, I can see where your frustration comes from George. I'm glad you acknowledged the lack of a viable alternative model in your post. Naturally, as the hobby grows, large commercial breeders will have to be the way forward. It is the only way a large variety of species can be sustained in the long term. I recall when there was a similar rift in aviculture. There is a contradiction in your objection, as it is hard to reconcile liking the development of colour morphs, and then disparaging commercial breeders. The development of morphs almost invariably involves a degree of line breeding or even clutch pairings, which are hardly conducive to producing healthy and quality animals in the long term. I appreciate your stories of visiting the different habitats of all our great species and I definitely wish it were still possible. Into the future, the more reptiles are exposed to the pet trade, the more reptile keeping will head in the direction of commercial production.
I don't think it's possible to have it both ways — either people are encouraged to keep reptiles as pets and reptile keeping thrives, or reptile ownership is separated from the pet culture and it becomes an obscure hobby, that will inevitably fall victim to well-meaning social and environmental activists looking to fulfil their own psychological needs, and eventually be banned altogether.
The continued growth in reptile keeping depends upon maintaining supply of reptiles and awareness of keeping them, to the pet market. I don't think profitability, which underpins commerciality, has much to do with it. There are now more reptiles bred in captivity in Australia than at any time in the past and mainly by private hobby keepers.This translate to an increased probability of producing colour morphs with out the need for commercial breeders and their necessary profit. At current prices commercial breeding of reptiles is not viable, but on a hobby level it is. The commercial phase has done its job in multiplying the numbers of reptiles available to the hobby but from here on keepers will do it because they want to without the dollar incentive. The interest in keeping captive reptiles adds to the public knowledge of reptiles in the wild and so benefits both the pet and environmental communities!
gb , I agree wholeheatedly with your sentiments, the worst thing that happened in this hobby is commercialisation, many people entering the hobby not because they love our very special reptiles, but because they see $ to be made from breeding large number of reptiles for sale.
I'm a very infrequent buyer, and my reptiles (skinks and dragons thus far) have all been bought as pets and companion animals (no cat , or dog or other furry pets in this family). All mine I found for sale local small scale breeders (who only have one or 2 breeding pairs and so only a small number or babies or hatchlings any time for sale.
Gumtree has been my source , and I only look at adds from local breeders. I was in Sofas for a while and they also advertised reptlles for offer / adoption and sale occasionally too.
Hmm, I just don't see the evil of commercialisation in breeding. I don't think there are many, if any, people who enter into breeding reptiles without a passion for them. Sure some might want a living, but a living can be made in a million ways and I don't think many would choose reptiles because of the margins. If we actually look at some of the major commercial breeding operations, let's take the, erm, "Serpent Farm" as an example — it was started by two of the most revered keepers in the country who were already making a comfortable living in other ways. I don't think there is anything to be feared from the word "profit", as all that really translates to is "long term viability". I'm not sure when Australians became such Marxists!
My problem is when the market becomes rediculosly over crowded which is due to a combonation of comercial and private breeders. I think for common stuff like beardeds etc unless you have a rare colour morph let commercial breeders breed it (I know pet stores are selling normal bearded for as low as $30!) however if you have something rare and unusual (Dipariphora sp or something like Varanus prasinus) you should breed it if possible. I think the future of this hobby is dependent on both comercial and private breeders.
Who are the commercial breeders (still functioning as such)?
yes the market is getting crazy saw normal beardies for $40 yesterday while getting pinkies. but as soon as the hatchies dry up they will go out a prices of over $100. prior to getting my license i was concerned that i would miss out of a young snake. the owner of the reptile shops assured me that there are young snakes 365 days of the year. this is why they have stopped breeding themselves
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[MENTION=39076]GBWhite[/MENTION] thank you for so articulately putting my feelings into words. I'm not some PETA type animal rights advocate, but I definitely get the feeling that there are a lot of hobbyists who don't truly care about their animals but see them as cash cows... of course they're around in all animal hobbies, but I feel like it's much more prevalent with reptiles and reptiles are more vulnerable because the majority of the general public doesn't really care about them. I do understand they're not domesticated animals; I know they don't have emotional needs to be met. I still feel that they deserve a decent living space not in some tiny dark drawer, and that people shouldn't buy them unless they know how long they can live, how big they can get, and are certain they can give them vet care if necessary and keep them until they die. I'm noticing as certain desirable species or mutations become less "rare" and readily available, breeders sell off their stock and move onto the newest shiny thing... To me this kind of behaviour doesn't feel like they genuinely love their animals. Yes I'm grateful for the hard work people have put into making these beautiful creatures accessible, but I wish I didn't see the side of breeding where people trade live animals like Pokemon or baseball cards.
[MENTION=41275]kingofnobbys[/MENTION] I have a guilty pleasure of checking the pet section of gumtree verrryyyy frequently lol. Although to be honest I don't really like gumtree for animals. I've bought from this forum, and if I'm looking for something in particular I post on a facebook group to get leads. The forum and FB gives you a bit more of an idea about the people you're dealing with than gumtree (my personal experience/opinion).
I used to have a FB account, I've abandoned it, too many time wasters and strangers want me to friend them. I only went to FB to stay in touch with my family and particularly my son when he was working/living a few 1000km away in FN QLD.
I was reffering to adult beardeds lol. Amazing amazon is selling hypo leatherbacks for $150!!! Pretty sure they are of breeding age as well. May have sold them all by now but still thats ridiculous. [MENTION=20031]Waterrat[/MENTION] snake ranch is one. Bluetoungelizards.com I think is another (run by Joe ball, awesome bloke and a leader in the bluetongue world.
geez that is cheap. i picked my hypo leatherback up for $100 but has a nipped tail
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More time wasters on gumtree. Trying to sell one of my male fionni atm, put an add on gumtree, had this guy say he is really interested and willing to pay what I ask. I asked him if he knew the care info, even offered to help him if he didn't, imdeatly he stoped replying to my emails lol.
I can remember in the early Snake Ranch days John said one of his ambitions was that every kid could afford a pet reptile. Well I think we are there now, the purpose of snake ranch has been achieved . It over and out. As for Joe, I doubt that he would keep as many reptiles, if he didn't have a real job to support his habit.
That why I said I think. I wasn't sure if Joe was actully fully comercial or sorta fifty, fifty.
That may have been one of JW's ambitions with Snake Ranch but I know that another motivation was to attempt to corner the market. I think people forget that as well as his passion for reptiles he is also an astute businessman and the primary purpose for establishing the business was to profit. Unfortunately as far as the later went, it looks like it turned out to be pretty much and epic fail. I was told by a very reliable source that his partner ditched out about 2 years after it started operating and in the end JW couldn't get rid of it quick enough.
I remember JW telling myself an a mate prior to the approval of licensing in NSW that if we wanted to cash in on the hobby that we should get our hands on as many children's as possible and start breeding them in anticipation of the expected demand.
Michael - To my knowledge Snake Ranch still operating (and as far as I'm aware is owned by a real estate salesman and rugby league player now - who I might add both have a passion for reptiles) but to what extent I'm not sure. Someone said they think it is mainly catering to pet shops and those with an interest in designer reptiles these days but I don't have any direct personal contact with the owners and this information could just be hearsay.