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Texas reptile rescues?

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Posted by: herp_whisperer at Sun Aug 13 02:12:23 2006  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by herp_whisperer ]  
   

Hi folks
I've been involved with reptiles for about 30 years now, from rattlesnake milking to...you name it. Back in the late 80's, I inadvertently ended up running a rescue facility.
My wife and kids and I just returned to my native Texas after 7 years in herp-free Alaska, and as soon as the local vets knew I was back, they began asking if I was going to start the rescue up again- while I'm happy that herps have become more mainstream, apparently the number of large abandoned reptiles has increased dramatically. I used to keep giant pythons, so I know what's involved very well, but I'm noticing a distinct change in both local laws and attitudes. We're in the process of purchasing a 100 acre property here in South Texas, where we'll live and probably breed a few critters (My wife wants to breed Bearded dragons, and I want to try Diamond pythons this time), and take in difficult-to-place herps.
Does anyone out there currently operate a rescue in Texas, and if so, would you mind sharing a bit about your current experience? I hope to focus on large snakes/monitors primarily, as it seems few if any rescues in the area will accept snakes over 12' or monitors over 4'..but from my last experience, I have no doubt we'll end up taking in any herp we have room for. (I'm dreading the infamous Iguana invasion)
I have no illusions about placing these critters- although it's sometimes possible to place large fellows with zoos or the like, it isn't common. These guys will probably be with us for most of our lives- we are aware of that. We're going to convert a large shop building on the property to a large reptile enclosure, with shift cages, etc. I just don't want to see massive numbers of Burms and retics euthanized, like Florida is doing. I'm an old softie, I guess.

Any experiences will be appreciated!

Thanks,
James


   

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