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Kobra on the loose in Germany (North Rhine-Westphalia)

Discussion in 'Not So Spineless Wonders' started by Martikhoras, Aug 28, 2019.

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    I have to write a bit about my thoughts on the things happening here right now.

    I work in a small city in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany. On Sunday, I got the news “A Naja kaouthia (Monocled Cobra) broke out of its enclosure and is on the loose.” A woman saw it in a staircase and phoned the police.

    The fear of getting bitten by a potentially deadly snake caused 4 houses to be evacuated because the cellars are connected.
    Of course the neighbours are mad af.

    The newest information I found was that they found snake skin in the cellar and found a shedded snake in the old enclosure. Right now they are thinking about a DNA-Test to find out if it’s the skin of the escaped snake. This would somewhat proof that the snake has returned on itself.

    The owner of the snake had an allowance of the city to keep such snakes and was regularly controlled if his husbandry was appropriate. He had 20 snakes. Because he basically "lost" one, he is not allowed to have such venomous snakes anymore and all 20 were fetched by the authorities by now.

    I do not know the guy and all informations I got, are from news websites.

    I read about a similar accident happening in Bochum. The owner had to pay all the service of the police and fire department. That were 21000€.

    Right now politicians are talking about a law to limit the husbandry of "dangerous animals." People should be forced to report if they have such animals and have an insurance about the potential damage by law.

    But "dangerous animals" have to be clarified first and the worst clarification I read was, that tarantulas are dangerous animals too.

    This is where I think "But why?!"

    I guess with my next statement I will not find many friends on here: I think that potentially deadly animals should only be held by institutes of some kind and not by private individuals.

    What do you guys think about that?
    Does someone here has such snakes?
    How do you prevent escapes?
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2019
  2. Killertut

    Killertut Arachnosquire

    well, politicians are uneducated and overreact. they want to ban all animals with poison/venom, including all tarantulas, all scorpions and i even heat´rd about someone wanting to ban poison dart frogs, although those aresafe in captivity...
  3. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    Paradox alert. Oxymoronous maximus. Contain the politicians, leave the snake alone.
    (Reword that: Right now the animals are talking about a law to limit the husbandry of dangerous politicians.

    The deadly (curious) Kaouthai
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2019
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  4. I like that a lot. :D

    After reading my post again today I have to apologise for my phrasing.
    I was angry and was not able to think clearly.
    Some sentences are really bad english. :bag:

    I hope they can identify the snake and do not ban tarantulas.
    That would be a pain in the a**.

    If they do not find the snake, they will gas the house for 24 hours and kill everything in it...
    Talking about animal rights... :banghead:
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  5. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    And they will probably be looking in the wrong places. If it's a Kaouthai it's a climber. When not hunting they like to get up somewhere high where it is warm and they will be undisturbed. They also have excellent sight recognition and do not equate humans as something to bite unless they are seriously harassed. Allowed to calm down they are quite docile, along with curious of their surroundings in a rather meek, inoffensive poking and nosing around way. Get some chicks and spread them around where the animal is likely to find them. With a chick or two in it's tummy they become placid and easily handled by an expert.
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  6. I think there should probably be a permitting process for potentially life threatening animals. Though I'll admit it's a bit complicated, because widows, for example, probably shouldn't have a permitting process--they're around in most places where they're kept anyway.

    They probably won't ban tarantulas. At least my guess.
  7. afaik there are no wild widows in Germany. But I understand what you mean.
    @The Snark In the news they say there are different experts participating in the search.

    I read a lot of comments on the news to the incident and most of them make me sick.
    The ignorance of humans...
    But there was someone who pointed something out: Maybe the owner found the snake himself and put it back in its enclosure. Because in fact he claims now, the snake in the staircase wasn't his. If it is really like that I would bet he does not want to pay for all the services and is searching for an excuse.

    All this is somehow confusing and interesting.
  8. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    Speaking of which, had a probable Kaouthai come out from under a portable closet in one of the rooms where maintenance was working on things yesterday. Good thing he had left the door open for the snake to do the boogie towards the canal. Even better it wasn't a guest staying in the room.

    I gave a training session of sorts a while ago when a Hannah wandered through that resort. The gardener found himself facing down a juvy that was pissed, raised up with hood. Housekeepers standing there paralyzed watching. I came strolling in and my panicked wife grabs me: SNAKE! Help!!! I went around the building and see gardener trying to shoo off the snake with an umbrella.
    Hey, I'm such a top flight pro snake handler! (not). I yell YUTE, stop, good and loud from about 10 feet behind the guy. He froze. Then I told him in a normal voice to walk backwards slowly. Pure magic. Unconfronted, the snake turned away and was gone. Such a complicated rescue mission! All these idiots have to do with cobras is let them feel unthreatened. They are smart and don't want anything to do with people.

    Last edited: Aug 29, 2019
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  9. News: They found the snake without any casualties this evening. The snake was outside behind the house and tried to hide while people were mowing the lawn (trying to eliminate hiding places). At least the poor animal did not have to die and noone got hurt.

    I hope the "dangerous animal"-law will be forgotten. Or at least they get the definition of "dangerous" somewhat right.
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  10. Chris LXXIX

    Chris LXXIX ArachnoGod Active Member

    I'm sorry but the fear of the "average" person is well justified on this case. We are talking about a Cobra... c'mon now, the risk is freaking serious in the case of a bite.

    We can talk for years about how much stupids politicians are and about the fact that they know next to zero when it comes to hobby-venomous animals but a fact remain: no one wants to find a potentially deadly venomous animal outside of his/her door, not even the ones that keep those.
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  11. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    The cat is back to walking on all four now, a little older and wiser about animated garden hoses in the yard, I needn't have bothered grabbing my glasses as the Siamensis thought 30 feet away from a human was too close, the Saw Scale only got the wife's pants leg, the cougar had second thoughts, the bears were only hungry, the horses were only being horses...
    It's their world too. I wouldn't want to live in a world where everything is neatly placed, child proofed and certified safe by some government's idea of sunshine and roses.

    "Life is pain, your highness. Anybody who tells you different is selling something" -Wesley
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2019
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  12. Chris LXXIX

    Chris LXXIX ArachnoGod Active Member

    The problem is that a Cobra on the loose in some North Rhine-Westphalia place isn't a normal thing.

    In India, Thailand etc areas is something you may expect, but not there. It's out of context, and people tends to freak out when things are out of context.
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  13. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

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  14. Broadly I agree, but a tarantula is different from a cobra.

    In MA we have a permitting process for venomous snakes. This always struck me as sensible, because they're hard to handle and contain properly. The permitting process is probably more difficult than it needs to be, but at the end of the day these animals are a hazard, and I think permitting is not a bad idea.

    I don't really know how you test someone's handling ability, though. Maybe give them a couple hooks and a rat snake and watch?
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  15. Chris LXXIX

    Chris LXXIX ArachnoGod Active Member

    Yes, obviously a spider (a non potentially lethal one, like T's are) is completely different than a Cobra, and not only for the venom part but hunting behaviour, habits etc.

    My point was that, when a Cobra (or another similar life threatening animal) is on the loose in a nation which isn't India, north Africa, Thai etc rural area (where people may expect this, and are, historically, used to that) people have a bit of slightly right to freak out :nailbiting:

    Personally, I would freak out as well, even if (no, especially if) I would be a Cobra keeper myself, because I'm the first supposed to know how much potent that venom is.

    So I completely agree with a system pushing high fines etc when those incidents occurs, because we can't afford to joke about those things.

    I do remember that here I've read (from a Swiss keeper) how Switzerland deal with this issue: mandatory insurance (I assume priced), windows closed even in Summer in the room/etc where you keep the venomous snakes, and gov./system inspections every six or so months.

    Honestly? It's reasonable, and viewing that as a gov. interference is simply selfish and incredibly stupid, because keeping a Cobra in the Western world (so again, different from being in India etc where, if nothing, you can WC one) isn't exactly like having the right to fresh water, a piece of bread to eat, and a work, but a mere 'plus' for satisfy 'your' desire of keeping one.

    So it's not absolutely a matter of "Hey, look, now the gov. wants to control this and that and etc of our life" but, if nothing, the opposite: is the gov./laws working for permitting to you that, following strictly those rules, of course.

    There's nations where simply the answer is a "Not today and not tomorrow either!".
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  16. I miss Najakeeper :( he got rid of his venomous collection when he had a kid, which was the absolutely responsible thing to do.

    And generally speaking, the Swiss permitting system sounds quite reasonable. Actually the Swiss seem to be reasonable about many things.
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
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  17. Chris LXXIX

    Chris LXXIX ArachnoGod Active Member

    Yep. That was the better, logical choice to do.
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  18. The Snark

    The Snark هرج و مرج مهندس Old Timer

    Me too. Knows his animals. Sad and glad. He owned up to dicing in his most recent videos and made the smart decision.
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