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Posted by Glenn on August 27, 2001 at 09:25:44:
In Reply to: Re: One more thing ---------- posted by toby on August 23, 2001 at 00:57:53:
: Really? That is most unusual. I cant imagine any any risk clean healthy animals would spread to wild animals, but who knows. Ive often heard the reason road collecting is possible because the road is a magnet of sorts for the animals, drawing them out of their habitat to soak up the heat. I would think these animals would be drawn from a minor region to the roads, but then again there are a lot of roads criss crossing in west texas...
: Oh well, enjoyed your viewpoint.
I must say that it is people like you, who attack others without first knowing even half of the facts that gets me going! You make an arrogant attack against field collectors in which you state you are sure they do not release captive bred into the wild to show how heinous they are. The fact is that, yes it is illegal in most states to release captive bred animals into the wild (unless it from a special breeding program such as run by a zoological park) and it is also illegal to reintroduce wild caught animals to the wild. In other words if you have caught an animal and kept it in captivity for any amount of time it is illegal to release it to the wild. This is because of the threat of disease to the wild population that such a release might pose.
Now these legal issues are easy enough for you to check on without your "Really...) doubting Thomas type of reply. And it is also easy to document that health concerns are the bonafide reason for not allowing releases into the wild. Yes all of those healthy captive kept, raised and or bred animals can harbor diseases that could decimate a wild population. How that works is that the captive animal builds up a resistance slowly to a disease that it was exposed to in captivity. Redular meals, clean water, a good heat source help the animal do this, as does a visit to the vet if the animal really gets sick. Now if that same animal is released into the wild it may remain a carrier of the disease without showing any ill effects itself. I will give you some really easy to understand historical examples of this among humans (among humans because these archives are easy to check out and understand, then you can check with a herpetological veterinarian or a herpetologist to see if this would hold true in snakes because I am sure you will doubt me). The examples are as follow: Europeans settlers to the northeastern portion of North America quickly realized that the Native Americans had no or little resistance to a disease that the Europeans carried with them - yes even the apparently healthy Europeans were carriers. Do you know what that disease was? It was small pox, a disease that decimated the Indians more so than any attacks by the white man did. The other example is Typhoid Mary. This woman was responsible for a Typhoid outbreak early in the history of the USA that resulted in thousands of deaths because she was a carrier that was not effected by the disease.
As for you point that roads attract snakes like a magnet from more "minor regions" (your words) that is pretty much nonsense. Snakes do not travel from areas that have no paved roads in search of paved roads. They are not lured to paved roads as if some spell was cast upon them. If there are no paved roads in the area a snake inhabits it lives its life without them. Do you really thing that the whole poipulation of some species of snake is lured to a road as the Pied Piper led away the rats? If so then collectors would be doing the snakes a big favor by catching them because the population would soon be decimated by cars and trucks running them over. If you do not believe that then cruise any road that gets even moderate nighttime traffic and count the run over dead or dying snakes.
By the way many field collectors, catch and release immediately (which is not illegal). Field Collectors also obtain hunting or fishing licenses in order to coollect, the funds from such licenses are the biggest portion of the money that goes to wildlife conservation in the USA. You can check that stat with any state gov't.
Wild collecting also insures that captive bred stock does not become inbred, which could decimate the captive stock and require mass captures to restock. A few now and then, to support captive breeding programs, is better than commercial collecting anyday.
Tell me something, if they out law herps for pets and herp collecting will you move onto protesting pet rock collecting too? First the herps - next the world! What a mentality?