This craptastic piece of propaganda is just as infuriating the second time as it was the first. Admittedly I had to force myself to keep watching when she started blathering about changing the genetics of the species. First of all we play around with the phenotypic expression of the species, but arguably there is no evidence that we are significantly altering the genetics. Now I am aware that there is currently a topic of conversation regarding doing just that in the forums but that is a completely different topic. Even for the sake of argument we were doing so, how exactly do these geniuses think every domesticated animal came to be domesticated, selective breeding for ideal traits. That actually goes for plants as well as animals.
They also devote a bit too much time to claiming that reptile keepers do not view them as sentient beings, without bothering to really explain the definition. Snakes have a complex nervous system which by definition makes them sentient. However, colloquially, the term is used to describe advanced reasoning or deduction skills, which they do not posses. As with pretty much everything in this video context is obscured in favor of their “pet” narrative.
As to quality of life take just about any ball python in the wild and compare it to just about any captive bread ball python. The elimination of their parasite load alone is an improvement. They are no longer subjected to predation. They no longer run the risk of starvation due to inability to catch prey. Comically the narrator points out the confined space that the one breeder was keeping them in, without actually showing the size of snakes in the tub, yet ignores the fact the one caught in the wild was pulled from a burrow that was narrower than the breedrs tub.
I am not going to pretend that all owners and breeders are both knowledgable let alone ethical. Every single trip to one of my local pet stores I end up in at least one 30 minute to hour discussion with someone that just “rescued” or was given a ball python, or worse got one without even the most basic research. Yes, people suck. It’s true in the dog world, equestrian, aquarium, ranchers, you name it. I am not responsible for some other morons actions, even as a breeder, well first year breeder, I cannot dictate what someone else does in their own home. Locally there are a handful of people I would never sell a pet rock to let alone a ball python.
I also like how they had to go overseas to show a burned snake because of the heating rock. Yeah I know it still happens even here, despite being well known for 30 years they were dangerous. I’ve been fortunate enough, at least as far as reptiles go where I’ve lived even the big box pet stores won’t sell that crap. I haven’t seen a burned snake in almost 20 years. I know it still happens and it pisses me off.
I guess what really grinds my gears is the hypocrisy of trying battle extreme ignorance on one extreme by by promoting ignorance from the opposite extreme. I’ve seen, first hand, the damage ignorant exonazi groups like PETA and the Sierra Club have done.
In over 30 years I have seen a dramatic improvement in the reptile “industry”, no change happens overnight and to expect it is either naive or ignorant. However, collectively we’ve shown a great capacity for self correction. I fully expect in the next 10-15 years there will be things that I will end up doing differently as we learn new things.
As far as trade shows, that was the one thing I actually agree with to fairly large degree. We make a big point of focusing on proper husbandry including providing a sense of security, yet stuff snakes in small clear containers under bright lights. I don’t claim to have an answer to that, but hopefully it is ine area that gets addressed. Which leads to what will probably the most offensive comment of my post, how many breeders did they interview before picking the one they showed? Seriously, was like watching the same inbred hillbilly in a moomoo being interviewed for the 4th time in as many years after a tornado has leveled her trailer house. Yeah I’m paraphrasing Jeff Foxworthy, but come on…