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Old 07-09-19, 10:49 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Re: Wild-caught vs. Captive-bred

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Originally Posted by Herpin' Man View Post
I think it's complicated, because if a given population of a common species is in no danger of loss due to habitat destruction, we would consider it sustainable. However these populations may interact with nearby populations, genetically speaking, so what if the nearby population is threatened by development?
Here in Minnesota, our largest populations of bull snakes and western hognose snakes occur in some of the fastest-growing areas of the state. I routinely find them in areas slated for housing and other development. Ethically, I would have no issues with removing these animals. But they can't legally be collected or even moved (moved where, anyway?)- figuratively speaking, from the path of the bulldozer. There is nearby State Forest land, which was once native prairie, teeming with these and other uncommon species. Rather than preserving it, the state turned it into a pine plantation. I guess it burns me a bit that habitat destruction, which is nearly always the biggest threat our beloved herps face, is acceptable, while any amount of private collection is criminalized.

Yes, animals do needlessly die in the hands of kids. Adults too. This applies to wild as well as captive bred herps. The only answer I can give is that morally, it is a price we pay (and the animals pay) to ultimately enjoy our hobby. It is something we all come to terms with in our own way, just as we all come to terms with, and rationalize, the idea of keeping animals captive to begin with. However the animals benefit in the long run as well, by playing a role in developing the people who will, ultimately grow to care for them, and hopefully play a part in protecting them.
You make a really good point. The pet trade is often criminalized (sometimes with good reason but a topic for another day) whereas habitat destruction kills far more than the pet trade does.

In addition, I know I'm going a little off course but your final point is also good. We all come to terms and for me, I give the best life I can to my animals and I do my best to not worry about the ones out of my control. This includes rescues which I haven't done in a long time. I believe keeping my animals in peak health is more important than the possible introduction of something to them. Again, that's for another topic.
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Old 07-12-19, 05:21 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Wild-caught vs. Captive-bred

In the early days of the hobby (well, in MY early days of the hobby), the typical herper got his or her start keeping native herps that they found close to home. From this, an interest in herps and their natural world developed. Now, it seems most hobbyists get their start with captive bred non-native animals, usually purchased at a shop or from a show.
I'm going to make a prediction. As this trend continues, herp keepers are going to be more interested in keeping exotics, breeding them, and trying to develop more interesting and marketable specimens. They are going to be losing interest in most of the natives, and less interested in their place in the environment, conservation, and so forth. As wildlife laws become more hospitable to the hobbyist interested in natives, and the animals subsequently be less accessible to us, this lack of interest can only be worsened, leading to a result that is the exact opposite of the intent behind these draconian laws.
Don't misunderstand me, I am wholly in favor of protecting herps and their environment. But, I also think it is important to consider the interest of the hobbyist who does want to work with native herps, as they could play an important role in their future.
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Old 07-19-19, 07:50 AM   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Wild-caught vs. Captive-bred

Caught in the wild is ok I think but not that bred in captivity is bad or anything but our eco system is stronger then most people think.In my area certain reptiles species are endangered but I have not seen rodent populations being out of control.Not to say that you want to catch so many snakes they become endangered but you dont need an exceedingly high snake population to keep rodents in control.Nature will balance itself out even when people mess with it,not that people should intentionally mess with the eco system but a little bit wont hurt
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