at Sat Oct 22 21:51:04 2005 [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by versuvius ]
Typically I just sit back and observe this forum, but this discussion is just too disgusting to sit back and keep quiet.
"Removing venom glands from a snake is on par with having your salivary glands removed. How would you feel? Venom is nothing more than "glorified saliva" which aids the snake in the digestive process BEFORE the prey item is actually consumed."
While it is true that venom glands are modified salivary glands, they serve different functions in humans vs. reptiles. In humans, it is a means to lubricate food for ease of swallowing. For reptiles, it is used to subdue prey and yes, it does begin the digestive process, however it is not essential to it. Over the years, I have had many venomous snakes that became accustomed to eating pre-killed prey and for years, they never bit their food and digested it just fine. Therefore, the correlation of salivary glands in humans vs reptiles is of no consequence.
"Have you ever taken a piece of pocorn and held it in your mouth without chewing it? If you haven't, your digestive enzymes (saliva) dissolves & breaks down the popcorn. Basically this is the same principal employed by venomous snakes."
Again, saliva does begin the digestive process even in humans, however there have been many cases of people not having functioning salivary glands and they have to drink with their meal to help "wash it down", but it is not essential part of the process and you can live fine without it. This is not the same function as in reptiles and is therefore irrelevant.
"PLEASE don't contribute to this barbaric "medical prosedure"."
So I assume that none of you anti-voiders have ever had your dogs or cats spayed or neutered or declawed. Never had a ferret that was descented or bird with clipped wings, right? I mean why would you subject them to such barbaric procedures.
"I suggest becoming adept at handling "hot" snakes & employ them into your presentation."
Venomoid or not, you should handle any venomous snakes the same, especially in the view of the public. Nothing makes a worse impression than holding a rattlesnake, v-oid or not.
"If not, use photos."
While photos are a useful tool, they just don't make a lasting impression on eager young minds.
I think if live snakes were used in your presentation, it would serve for a more powerful & captivating presentation to your audience. You must convey to your audience that venomous snakes should be respected, but also illustrate that if given a wide berth, venomous snakes pose no real danger to human lives.
I do agree with this statement. I do many educational presentations, but many places, especially schools, will not allow venomous snakes. Therefore, I have to use venomoid snakes. I handle them as if they were a hot snake and the only people who know they are venomoid are myself, my assistants, and the powers that be that are concerned with the liability of using a hot snake. I do not advertise that they are venomoid to the audience.
"I have had numerous venomous snakes over the years & what fasinates me the most about them is that they have this remarkable & efficient defense mechanism but when they feel they are not threatened, they are uninclined to use it. Please reconsider your idea about venomoids."
And finally, I again agree that venomous snakes are fascinating creatures. I have many hot's myself and I like letting them stay hot. But I am not opposed to having venomoids either. I think you should keep an open mind and do what you feel is right. Just don't free handle a rattlesnake in front of a bunch of kids.
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