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Please read this if you reside in the UK and feed live vertebrate food!

Discussion in 'Tarantula Chat' started by Salt, Jan 23, 2011.

  1. Salt

    Salt Arachnopeon

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    Feeding your Ts live mice, or even pinkies, is illegal in the UK. I assumed this was common knowledge of keepers on here but I've seen a number of posts about it, so I'd like to explain.

    Mice are vertebrates, meaning they have a spine, containing the CNS, and feel pain. Though there is no law that specifically says "you cannot feed vertebrates as food", there is a law that says you cannot cause suffering to animals; the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Invertebrate food is legal to feed as they do not feel pain (debatable, but not my place to say) and they have been made exception. Due to having a simple CNS, they don't have nociceptors and are literally unable to experience it. Evolutionists say it's because they have such a shorter life, they do not need to learn and all behaviour is intuitive (unlike vertebrates who learn from pain).

    I will not criticise, because each may have their own opinion on the matter so mine will remain undisclosed. However, you should be aware that if you are found out by any animal welfare officer, you are liable to conviction. Charges vary, sometimes it's a £50 fine, sometimes it's a 10-year ban from keeping animals. People HAVE been convicted in the past.

    Links
    http://www.parl.gc.ca/37/2/parlbus/c...e/shelly-e.htm
    http://www.defra.gov.uk/foodfarm/far...l/welfare/act/
    http://www.livefoodshop.co.uk/forum/...howtopic=72440
    http://merlins-blog.co.uk/?p=351 (Scottish, but still applies to England, Wales and N. Ireland as well)

    Please, if you are still interested, further research it.

    Frozen vertebrates have, if done legally, been killed humanely (method depending on the size and quantity of the animal - more on euthanisation methods later), and exposure to predators is not considered a humane euthanisation method. They are sold in shops to feed reptiles, birds of prey, and sometimes other animals. Feeding tarantulas dead mice won't work, they will not accept it.

    For your curiosity:
    We kill our own food "humanely" too (but www.meat.org would suggest otherwise, and no promises can be made about any meat product. This is only the assumption that all slaughterhouses follow legislation), as well as other animals that need to be put down.

    Euthanisation Methods
    Mouse, single: Blow to the head, usually by hitting it against a table. Sounds grim but it's actually quick and painless.
    Mice, large quantity: Put in an airtight enclosure and given high doses of C02. Death ensues between 5-10 minutes.
    Fish: Blow to the head (usually people cover the fish in a towel and hit the head with the handle of a knife)
    Dogs/cats/similar sized animals: Anaesthetic overdose.
    Large animals, like a cow, horse or alpaca: Bullet or bolt to the head. Bullets are used more for pets, race horses and working animals, whereas the bolt to the head is a cheap way of killing meat animals like cows. It's a large bolt of metal on a machine that, once the animal is in position, will come out (spring loaded) and destroy the brain.

    It is ILLEGAL to put any living vertebrate in an enclosure with a predator that will kill it: Snakes, tarantulas, bosc monitors, etc but only in the United Kingdom. As far as I am aware, it's legal everywhere else. So folks from Australia, USA, Europe and Wonderland shouldn't have to worry. Look it up if you're unsure though.

    United Kingdom law, under the Animal Welfare Act 1996, says you may not feed vertebrates, live, to a predator. This is not my personal opinion, it is just the law.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 24, 2011
  2. Bill S

    Bill S Arachnoprince Old Timer

    Has anyone ever actually been prosecuted for feeding vertebrates to arachnids? Or is this just something that someone thinks (or hopes) might be a real legal issue?
     
  3. razor244

    razor244 Arachnopeon

    so if i lived in the UK i cant feed my snakes mice?( i dont do frozen )
     
  4. That's kinda a total load man.. Technically you can get charged for not feeding mice to snakes as that could be considered animal cruelty. You aren't feeding your animals. While it isn't exactly nessisary to feed vertibrates to inverts, who's to say that inverts don't feel pain.. I find something very flawed with this arguement.
     
  5. razor244

    razor244 Arachnopeon

    ordomallus i agree with you
     
  6. Bengal21

    Bengal21 Arachnopeon

    By this logic, have all UK'ers been notified they are now vegitarians? Excuse me Mr. Farmer, you're gonna have to come with us. We've received reports you've been killing these cows and it says here they have a backbone.
     
  7. Jmugleston

    Jmugleston Arachnoprince Old Timer

    From talking with reptile keepers there is some truth to the OP's statments. Humanely dispatched (we could fill volumes arguing the meaning of that phrase) vertebrates are okay so your reptiles, raptors, kids, etc. can all eat and be happy provided the animal was killed in a nice way :). Throwing a live mouse in with your snake supposedly is not allowed. There are some stipulations though as some animals will not eat pre-killed prey. I'd like to know if anyone has been prosecuted for this. It sounds like a stupid bit of legislation shrouded in a bit of misunderstanding and anthropomorphism.
     
  8. Salt

    Salt Arachnopeon

    Ok, it's not logic, it's a year long study at college on the matter (I study animal management and need to know the legal issues when feeding live food).

    People HAVE been prosecuted! So, though I'm not saying whether I agree/disagree with feeding live vertebrate food or not, I just wanted to inform you of the law.

    Lastly, it's very widely accepted now that invertebrates don't feel pain. Due to having a simple CNS, they don't have nociceptors and are literally unable to experience it. Evolutionists say it's because they have such a shorter life, they do not need to learn and all behaviour is intuitive (unlike vertebrates who learn from pain).

    http://www.parl.gc.ca/37/2/parlbus/commbus/senate/com-e/lega-e/witn-e/shelly-e.htm
    http://www.defra.gov.uk/foodfarm/farmanimal/welfare/act/
    http://www.livefoodshop.co.uk/forum/index.php?showtopic=72440
    http://merlins-blog.co.uk/?p=351 (Scottish, but still applies to England, Wales and N. Ireland as well)

    Please, if you are still interested, further research it.

    P.S. Just for quick note after seeing "I don't do frozen": frozen vertebrates have been killed humanely(depending on the size and quantity of the animal. Mice are usually killed by C02 overdose if lots of them, or impact to the head if single), and exposure to predators is not considered a humane euthanisation method. They are sold in shops to feed reptiles, birds of prey, and sometimes other animals. Feeding tarantulas dead mice won't work, they will not accept it.

    For your curiosity:
    We kill our own food "humanely" too (but www.meat.org would suggest otherwise), as well as other animals that need to be put down.

    Mouse, single: Blow to the head, usually by hitting it against a table. Sounds grim but it's actually quick and painless.
    Mice, large quantity: Put in an airtight enclosure and given high doses of C02. Death ensues between 5-10 minutes.
    Fish: Blow to the head (usually people cover the fish in a towel and hit the head with the handle of a knife)
    Dogs/cats/similar sized animals: Anaesthetic overdose.
    Large animals, like a cow, horse or alpaca: Bullet or bolt to the head. Bullets are used more for pets, race horses and working animals, whereas the bolt to the head is a cheap way of killing meat animals like cows. It's a large bolt of metal on a machine that, once the animal is in position, will come out (spring loaded) and destroy the brain.

    Conclusion: It is ILLEGAL to put any living vertebrate in an enclosure with a predator that will kill it: Snakes, tarantulas, bosc monitors, etc but only in the United Kingdom. As far as I am aware, it's legal everywhere else. So folks from Australia, USA, Europe and Wonderland shouldn't have to worry. Look it up if you're unsure though.
     
    Last edited: Jan 24, 2011
  9. Harlock

    Harlock Arachnosquire

    Hey Salt, inverts definitely feel pain, or something like it. Here is a study on fruit fly larva where they linked electroshock to a smell. The larva learned which areas of the petri dish to go into to avoid the shock.

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/56312x77547wuj28/
     
  10. LirvA

    LirvA Arachnosquire


    No, it means they have skeletal systems with backbones and spinal columns.
     
  11. lazarus

    lazarus Arachnosquire

    What about hunting? I know hunting is a very popular "sport" in the UK, is that considered "humanely"?

    you really think animals that you eat die without pain? have a look here to see what happens in a slaughterhouse, how "humanely" they are euthanised.
     
  12. Salt

    Salt Arachnopeon

    Yes, I'm aware "vertebrate" means they have an internal skeletal system. And inverts may or may not feel pain, however, in the eyes of Parliament, they don't. Also, hunting is legal so long as it's using hunting rifles and killed in the most humane way possible. Bows/crossbows, dogs and traps that hurt the animal (i.e. beartraps) are illegal. Oh, and I don't personally agree with hunting, and I don't eat meat so don't talk to me about slaughterhouses.

    I'm not trying to fight with you guys, if you're unhappy with the law, talk to the house of commons. Not me.

    ---------- Post added at 10:07 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:05 AM ----------

    When I spoke about meat animals in my last post, I put a link showing a lot of inhumanity in slaughterhouses. So, please, before you instigate with sarcastic comments, actually read the thread.

    This is not an opinion, it's a notice.
     
  13. lazarus

    lazarus Arachnosquire

    Is it illegal to have mice traps in your house?

    Even with hunting rifles they don't always die from one shot. Sometimes they shoot the animal and they can't find it so the poor thing will have an awful death. How is that more humane then letting the snake kill it? I'm 100% sure that in most cases the snake will kill it faster and with less pain.

    That law is an epic fail IMHO, any anti-cruelty law should start with banning bullfighting and hunting as a sport
     
  14. Salt

    Salt Arachnopeon

    Due to the abundance of nitwits arguing with me, saying I'm wrong (when I'm only telling you the opinion of the government), I am closing the thread. All information on the matter is in the original post.

    Maybe not, apparently I can't on this forum. Oh well.

    Listen, I am not pro-hunting, anti-live vert food nor am I expressing any opinion here. If you're upset, take it up with Parliament, not me. Sorry, but this is the way it is. Also, do some research! My point here is that it IS illegal, not that they don't feel pain, or the distinction between humane and inhumane, just the law.

    ---------- Post added at 10:27 AM ---------- Previous post was at 10:23 AM ----------

    Bullfighting is illegal in the UK. And mouse-traps are illegal. Also, I agree with you on hunting, I'm very against it myself - especially for sport.
     
  15. I understand your point a bit more now that you have added more information. But your original post was very very vague and seemed not to have correct information, I understand that you are trying to point out the "laws" but I find them to be very inept at understanding nature and what's really "humane" or what animals feel pain. Everything feels pain of some form. I find that C02 chambers would be less "humane" than a invert biting it and killing it with its venom. I've fed vertebrates as food before (not illegal in Canada) and they are dead within a few seconds, not 5-10 minutes as with a C02 chamber. I would think they experience more panic and fright in a C02 chamber that drags out for several minutes than dying within a few seconds from a predator.

    While I do understand you aren't trying to cause an arguement I just find it very silly that the laws veiw things this way. Then again same could be said about a lot of the bylaws in some cities here. Many things are banned and made illegal. In other provinces all boids and pythons are illegal.

    Don't mean to jump down your throat originally, you have just edited your post and a lot of the information given us has changed. Not that I agree with it but I do understand what you're saying.

    Layne
     
  16. Salt

    Salt Arachnopeon

    Ok, I guess there was a misunderstanding.

    Also, just to let you know, C02 is a very humane way of euthanisation - it knocks then unconscious near instantly, into a sleep they just won't wake up from. No pain, no panic.
     
  17. jbm150

    jbm150 Arachnoprince

    Its all arbitrary really. If someone wanted to spend the money or resources, they should be able to feed their big Burmese python kittens and puppies right? Though perhaps euthanizing them first would be more proper. What's the difference? People view rats, mice, rabbits, pigs, chickens as pets and companions. Wouldn't anything short of a human be acceptable? I have to kind of give it to this law, at least they create a comprehensive standard to blanket prohibit vertebrates and the reasoning behind it is compassionate and provides protection against animal cruelty. I also think its dumb and a bit of overlegislation. The animals are bred specifically for feeding purposes. Are we becoming so removed from the natural world that we are losing touch with it? Its one thing to respect and to cherish the natural world, its another to feel guilty about it :rolleyes:


    As an aside, I take it its illegal in the UK to use feeder fish for predatory fish? If I wanted to go fishing, would I be arrested for using live fish as bait? (I work for an international fishing organization, perhaps I should know this LOL)
     
  18. Mez

    Mez Arachnoknight

    This thread is pointless. Everyone in the UK knows, or should know, this.
    Feeding one vertabrate to another is illegal in the UK and rightly so, there is no actual need to feed your Corn Snake or GTP live mammals, they happily take defrosted.
    Now, the grey area. You are allowed to feed live vertabrate food if deemed it would be more suffering for the animal that needs feeding to starve to death, this would probably apply to species of Boiga, Ahtuella and other lizard loving snakes that are primarily wild caught and will not take frozen food.
    The law is there to try and keep things humane. Snakes (im using snakes as an example because i reckon if i dig deep enough i could find the loophole that says its only vertabrate to vertabrate, and arachnids are not vertabrates, therefor technically you could be feeding the spider to the mouse..) in the most part do not require live food in captivity and will thrive with frozen/defrosted diet, the argument can also be made that feeding live vertabrate food creates unneccisery (spelt totally wrong!) stress and possibly injure to not just one but two animals.

    Fish are a totally kettle of.....well, fish!
    The bodies that brought this law into place dont have any say on Aquatics, and although you cannot buy "feeder fish" for sale in the UK the actual law dosnt specifically state fish, and this is open to interpratation.
    Fishing wise, it totally depends on the water whether you are allowed to use Live bait, most places have a ban on it, although some dont. Usually Pike only places dont have the ban, but again its all upto who owns the water, and that is usually an Angling club.
     
  19. pouchedrat

    pouchedrat Arachnolord Old Timer

    MD
    I thought that law was well known in the UK???? Heck I knew about it for MANY years, and I'm here in the USA. It's a good law, and prevents harm all around.

    I could have had a snow corn if the original idiot owner actually kept feeding her prekilled instead of randomly offering up a live rat for the heck of it. Nothing like getting prepared for a new pet, only for them to be all "stupid rat killed it" ....especially after telling them not to do it.
     
  20. jbm150

    jbm150 Arachnoprince

    That sucks :(. I definitely agree that is good REASON not to feed live, especially poorly-sized prey. If you don't have enough common sense to not feed your pet something that is going to be more of a fight then a feeding, you just suck at life. But I still don't think there should be a law about it....
     
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