Whats Happening To The UK Snake Scene?

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The UK reptile scene continues to go from strength to strength as knowledge in the community increases and the range of species available continues to grow.

The UK is slowly starting to introduce the same massive range of different color forms of snakes commonly available across the USA.

There are a number of British reptile societies that seem to be doing very well and there are many, many private breeders producing numerous reasonably-priced and high quality baby snakes for other hobbyists.

On the other hand, one of the national animal welfare charities - the Royal Society For the Prevention Of Cruelty To Animals - or RSPCA - is giving real cause for concern.

The RSPCA seem to want to stamp out the keeping of snakes - as well as other "exotic" pets - altogether.

Numerous campaigns have been going on, the most notable of which has been having just about every reptile fair at which livestock is for sale banned.

These reptile fairs have always been a favourite of mine - it's a chance to meet many new people and discuss our hobby.

It's a chance to pick up some great bargains and often see a selection of the rarer and more interesting species and color forms rarely if ever seen in standard pet stores.

To give you an example, here in the UK it is not unusual to pay up to £60 for a single baby Yemen chameleon yet a few years ago at a show I managed to pick up two young breeding pairs for just £100 in total - quite a bargain I think you'll agree!

There are two ways in which UK snake keepers are fighting back.

If you are a UK reptile keeper I urge you to join the FBS to help keep the hobby going.

Secondly, whilst these fairs that are open to the public have been banned, the RSPCA have as yet been unable to ban members-only meetings.

One popular such meeting is run by the International Herpetological Society of which I am personally a member and a big fan.

If you're really passionate about the hobby and are based in the UK I strongly recommend you join - and who knows - I might even see you there at the next show!