This isnt anything new. I know of many sites that sells venomous snakes. I know right now where if i wanted to I could purchase anything from rattlers to king cobras to mambas. Im not going to mention where for obvious reasons. Most of the sellers I know of though check state laws as well as age of the buyer.
kingsnake.com for one is a site most people know, they have a classified section for hots, and all you have to do is look at the sellers websites, and there opens up a whole world of buying hots online. Following your state laws, of course.
Yes, I know this is nothing new and that hot snakes are easilly available over the net. I just found it interesting that the alabama agency is activly enforcing the law and is really after those involved in such activity. I also remember another article quite a few months ago that the same agency was really after those in state who were advertising endangered turtles for sale over the net.
To just say "sold venomous snakes over the internet" without precise info if the seller bothered to check the buyer for references etc is a bit unfair. It makes it sound like the individual sold venomous snakes like any other commodity that can be bought online. Thats not usual how its done. But a typical example how media twist things around.
I've bought venomous herps online multiple times...shipping runs around $100 because they have to be shipped Delat Dash/air cargo... in a wooden crate..kinda a pain in the butt to drive to the airport but oh well...In fact, I have four beaded lizards being shipped in this coming tuesday that'll I'll have to drive to the airport to pick up.
Here in Texas we even have a reptile show that allows the selling of venomous reptiles... Most of the sellers are responsible...I wish the laws were alittle stricter. SOME of the people who purchase these animals don't have the experience that many of us serious keepers do...some are just thrill seekers who think it's cool to keep a cobra in their living room...all it'll take is a good accident to help shutdown that show and/or ban them all together..
Florida also has a HOT show... their laws are alittle stricter than Texas's where you have to apprentice under someone for a set number of hours before you get a license/permit (I believe- correct me if I'm wrong).
Yeah unfortunately some sellers don't check to see who they are selling the animal to. Most of the big time dealers that sell venomous usually check to see if the person needs a permit/liscense in their state, and if they have one. They usually also check if the person is over the age of 18.
Personally I think all states should require liscense's/permits and some sort of class or something to determine if the person is able to handle keeping a venomous snake.
Unfortunatly a license sytem dont prevent the bad eggs from keeping the snakes, but the license paper provides some legal protection incase you run into problem with the community where you live such as nasty neighbors or if you get nailed.
It cant be easy to create such a license system. I can think of a ton of problems, such as how much knowledge on snakes in general should a person have to be able to obtain a licence for vens etc.
Back in the days in Sweden you needed to be a member of a herpetological society and have references from wellknown people in the hobby, othervise it was very difficult to get a snake. That worked very well but now anyone can drive a few hours and get a venomous snake on a show.