Tame Mamba?

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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby CarlaSmit87 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:37 am

My view is that is just a matter of time, we all know snakes have their own "off" days where they are just more grumpy than others. Accidents happens in a blink of an eye and with a black mamba even faster. Yes it is his choice to keep a snake like that, but the problem is as mentioned before, if he does get tagged, either fatal or not, it will be immediately national news and all reptile keepers will get tagged under the same label an making it even harder to get permits to keep reptiles. Sometimes it's worth giving things more thought about what the consequences will entail not only for you but everyone else in this hobby.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby Mamba no 5 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 10:47 am

I Am not saying this is necessarily a bad thing, but I can see so many things going wrong so easily, I admire him for his "guts" but I can't help but see that familiar pattern that I have seen so many times before, when people keep wild animals such as Tigers, Bears, Lions, or Crocodiles in their houses or apartments, they usually claim that these animals are calm or even tame, and this might be the case for years, but all that is needed is a single bad incident and the whole things goes sour.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby ColinWa » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:03 am

I know, I went off and the swearing I guess was a bit unecessary. I'm aware that this is a very contraversial subject, thing is, our arguements are never heard, and it becomes frustrating, very very frustrating.

@ - lerikoen - You can appreciate the fact that this is not the first time this has happened. Yes it should be kept civil, but when it starts becomming a mockery it gets me seeing red. It NEVER EVER EVER get's sorted in a civil matter, it always end up in some form of slander, laughter and mockery of the person. And then people like me and Demigod's opinions get walked over. This is a bit off topic, but this issue has been raised before, it's when innocent people ask for help, they get rude and abupt responses, and that's why most, from what i've heard from people leaving, are leaving. Small things like that make people feel like they're inferior and actaully end up too scared to even ask questions.

But to be honest, i'm not sure why i'm fighting here because it's not being taken up with open mindedness, I'll leave it at that and rather not start another arguement. I'm just making a plea, Sad thing is, when I got into this arguement before on a different topic, with different people, I try and understand why people disagree with his methods and all that, I listended and I appreciated the fact that people are concerned about his ways. Yet we don't get treated with the same open mindedness, a tad unfair and frustrating. There's one reason he does it, yet very few can take it for what it is, or grasp it. As Demigod said he's done what he needed to to create awareness and get his message through to people, and all that to protect the very creatures we all love, but we still fight about it?

Now if some cowboy tries this and gets hurt, it's not Neels' fault, he made it blatant not to try this at home. Then those idiots should be targeted, not him.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby Hantam » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:03 am

This was on Cart Blance last night. This guy is something else. He stands stroking this mamba if it is his pet dog. I must say he handles it with his hand and a grab stick but does not close the crab stick. The poor TV guys nearly sh#$t themselves being this close to the mamba. One thing for sure nobody will break into this house and live to tell the story. The mamba has free movement in the house. I have one problem with this as now that it was on TV some idiot will try and do the same and then get bitten and then blame the snake.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby kfc223 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:14 am

Wazted wrote:I found this article about them..

LYDENBURG - Black mamba. The deadliest of all African snakes, the very mention of which strikes fear into the hearts of men. Even Steve Irwin preferred to keep his distance from this extremely venomous serpent. Yet in Lydenburg there lives a man who not only owns a black mamba, he holds it, strokes it and feeds it water from the palm of his hand.


Her name is Swartbek and at 3,2 metres, is a pretty impressive specimen indeed.
Neels Bothma, who has been working with reptiles for the better part of 50 years and is the only individual accredited by the Mpumalanga Tourism and Parks Association (MTPA) to conduct reptile training and education, is the owner of this extraordinary snake.


Neels says his love of wildlife and lifelong work in this field, started with his father, a farmer who taught him that farming and wildlife went hand in hand and taught him to love even those things that people feared, particularly so-called dangerous wildlife. As a child Neels kept reptiles as pets, much to his mother’s dismay. She wondered why he couldn’t have normal hobbies like owning fish or collecting stamps.
In 1994 he started the Mpumalanga Herpetological Association in Nelspruit and registered as a paramedic, working as a station officer for four years. It was during this time that Swartbek came into his life. He received a call that a female black mamba swollen with eggs had been run over. Neels rushed there to take the snake to the vet but it died on the way. As the vet sliced open the body and carefully removed all 13 eggs, placing them in an incubator, Neels took the first hatchling as his own.


Swartbek is nearly nine years old and trusts Neels completely. "She has never tried to bite me and is even comfortable shedding her skin in my hands," which, according to Neels, is the most dangerous time to come into contact with a snake, as it partially loses its eyesight and resultantly becomes very nervous.
It does not get milked and is highly venomous, but is perfectly calm in Neels’ company. This case is unique - he is the only person in known history to have "tamed" or developed a relationship with a black mamba, which makes friend and colleague at MTPA, Chris Hobkirk very nervous. "This case is one in a million and I worry that one day she will bite. You cannot tame snakes, there’s no such thing, they just get comfortable with human disturbance and accept that it isn’t life-threatening. But even dogs, which for years have been tame, can suddenly one day attack a child. She could have a bad day one day and strike," says Chris, who urges everyone not to attempt to handle a black mamba. He admits that this extraordinary relationship helps to debunk the myth that it is an aggressive, violent killer. "It’s a nervous creature that will only strike if it feels threatened or cornered. If you come across a black mamba just move away slowly so that it knows you aren’t a threat, " says Chris.


Seeing Neels and Swartbek together is the most beautiful and incredible thing, however, both men stress that this is a unique case and should not be tried at home, ever!


Now lets hope some poor fool/idiot doesn't try this.

I am with serpent on this one! People should never treat any venomous snake like this. Neels is just being irresponsible.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby demigod06 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:17 am

Haha no one has ever broken into his house in 37 years. He also says this is an extreme exception and he does not condone this to anyone. He really is an amazing person, and if you are an experienced snake handler like me or him, sure free handle... but we know what we are doing and we understand the consequences. If it bothers people then keep it to yourself. It makes me mad though when guys, people that have next to no experience, looking at a venomous snake like they would at a ball python then free handle a hot. They then blame the snake.

You trust your "tame" lions in lion parks, and "tame" monster retics in parks? why not a mamba?
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby najarw » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:18 am

I know Neels (a friend of mine serpent) and have seen the snake and where it is housed. anyone who has doubts should just visit him to see for themselves what the set up is. The snake is in a secure locked room. I do not free handle or promote free handling butif other people are comfortable with it then it is their prerogative to do it. I don't drink either but don't judge those who do. There are risks with handling venomous snakes as there are with keeping guns. It is an idividuals right as long as he does not endager those around him which I do not belive Neels does. I think the worst thing is alarmist reactions such as "what if the camera fell on him"!! really. Although not advised for inexperianced keepers, there is nothing wrong with keeping venom. I think most people who keep venomous snake are more responsible than a lot of gun owners.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby cascade » Mon Feb 11, 2013 11:39 am

I have been part of this forum for the past 5 years, My name might be green, but does not mean I'm green.
I know all about trends on the interactive version of our lives and how people kind of work,
I just have an issue with both you and Demi using that bad language, be brave and use the full word, if you going to type it out please, don't be so scared :smt010 . :smt014 :smt018 :smt021 You both know it is wrong and not allowed on the forum so why even use it!?

The fact is this, Forums are getting soft, not forums, the members on the forum are getting soft, and cry far to easy and take things far to personal, the topic was just started/shared with all of us, as the forum is to do with snakes, weather it is a snake "on" someone's lap or a snake in cage the forum is for like minded people, and people do get flak as the other topic that was started not to long ago, about some guys collection of Hots, he got flak from a couple of people.

Now the responses that are coming, getting posted is more in line what a discussion should look like.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby Gargoyle » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:12 pm

The guy has been bitten 3 times already. . . .just saying. . .
Its all a matter of opinion really which will end up in an endless debate . We can only hope that some "special person" doesnt think that they can free-handle any venomous snake because Neels did it on Care Blanche.
My opinion - He tried to show that snakes are not evil and should be respected and he didnt say that we should all go get a mamba to free-handle. However, he should consider that its not the most responsible thing to do and could easily create the controversy it just did.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby jaksno.9 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:22 pm

Something that kills me on this forum, is that when someone post something like my snake doesnt want to eat, or it is shedding badly you have a 3 page thread to follow. but when there is a new dscovery or an important name change or something worthwhile debating or discussing there are 3 Posts about it.... come on guys.

Now thats the main reason why some of the more experienced guys dont post here anymore, and the guys that have been on the forum about 5 years or more can vouch for me, the experienced guys would answer any question in a heart beat but now they dont say a word they just watch other running Riot.

Lets Make SA REPTILES an informative and exciting forum like it use to be...
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby GregZN » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:23 pm

I would love to stir this pot a little.. While watching Donald schultz, bugging the hell out a spectacle cobra,(this is entertainment) I was told about the cart blanch story.. To me the old man is set in his ways and did not advertise how cool it is that he can handle swartbeck... He advises every one to realize this is a once off and with care and love of conservation he has achieved this, once he came to the conclusion the snake is the way it is, he took that opportunity.. Now 12 years later he has a" tame mamba". I do not keep hots and doubt I ever will, but I'd like to know how to handle my snake/snakes if on that one off day, one happens to escape... How would this be achieved?
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby kfc223 » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:51 pm

demigod06 wrote:...and if you are an experienced snake handler like me or him, sure free handle...


This sentence irritates me. I think you are being a bit "cocky" by calling yourself a experienced snake handler. What makes you a better handler than me?

Being humble isn't something that everyone is capable of doing. And I also think your sentence contradicts itself. A experienced and wise snake handler would never free handle because they are capable of using the proper equipment(hook stick).

There are a handful of very good snake handlers on this forum such as Arno Naude, Heidi(bushbaby), Bjorn Unger, Westly, ect. And none of them go and call themselves "experienced snake handlers". They don't free handle either.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby ColinWa » Mon Feb 11, 2013 12:57 pm

kfc223 wrote:
demigod06 wrote:...and if you are an experienced snake handler like me or him, sure free handle...


This sentence irritates me. I think you are being a bit "cocky" by calling yourself a experienced snake handler. What makes you a better handler than me?

Being humble isn't something that everyone is capable of doing. And I also think your sentence contradicts itself. A experienced and wise snake handler would never free handle because they are capable of using the proper equipment(hook stick).

There are a handful of very good snake handlers on this forum such as Arno Naude, Heidi(bushbaby), Bjorn Unger, Westly, ect. And none of them go and call themselves "experienced snake handlers". They don't free handle either.


You sir, are completely taking that sentence out of context. She's not trying to brag or sound cool, she's stating that if people do choose to free handle, they should have somewhat experience in the field. Nobody tried entering a "who's got the biggest ego here" competition. Nobody doubted anybodies capabilities here.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby Unforgiven » Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:40 pm

I hate entering into debates like this becuase the "poo" is always flung around and hits the ceiling in the end.

I have just a few questions/ observations.

I have seen Mr Neels and his handling in photos - what he is doing sure is risky, but it's his choice and I am quite sure he can tell when his snake has a bad day. Everybody keeps complaining that with everybody freehandling its going to take just one person to get bit and ruin it for everyone. My question, along with Mr Neels connection is how many people have been bitten through their stupidity so far? I am sure there must be a few. What happens when the responsible keeper gets tagged accidentally? Who says Natcon will bother trying to differentiate between an accident and an ego rush? I honestly don't see how one person will make a difference when there are already so many incidents. - Take note I do not own nor do I handle any venomous snakes - this is just my observation

As for the husbandry of the snake - its quite old, that counts for something. If it really is kept in its own room and not actually allowed to free roam the house and the conditions are being met, what is the problem? I am not saying that these are RESPONSIBLE ways of keeping the snake by any means.

It certainly doesn't sound like this Mr Neels guy is telling everyone to go out and handle venomous snakes, it certainly does sound like he cares for the animals and has a good bit for conservation, but there is always some idiot who will come along and try to copy him. And that goes for all sorts of advertising - people understand what they want to.

I also don't quite understand what demi god meant by the sentence:
"and if you are an experienced snake handler like me or him, sure free handle... but we know what we are doing and we understand the consequences. If it bothers people then keep it to yourself"

AS KFC interpretted it, it sounds a lot like you are saying that you should only free handle a venomous snake if you know what you are doing? If I understand this wrong please correct me? My view was that the more experienced you are, the more you realise how much you should avoid freehandling? Why risk it when you can handle the snake perfectly without endagering yourself or it (by using hooks).I do aggree though on the "keep it to yourself" part becuase again, sone idiot is gonna come along and see and think its okay to do the same.
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Re: Tame Mamba?

Postby Serpent » Mon Feb 11, 2013 2:43 pm

najarw wrote:I know Neels (a friend of mine serpent) and have seen the snake and where it is housed. anyone who has doubts should just visit him to see for themselves what the set up is. The snake is in a secure locked room. I do not free handle or promote free handling butif other people are comfortable with it then it is their prerogative to do it. I don't drink either but don't judge those who do. There are risks with handling venomous snakes as there are with keeping guns. It is an idividuals right as long as he does not endager those around him which I do not belive Neels does. I think the worst thing is alarmist reactions such as "what if the camera fell on him"!! really. Although not advised for inexperianced keepers, there is nothing wrong with keeping venom. I think most people who keep venomous snake are more responsible than a lot of gun owners.


Najarw:

I have been keeping venomous snakes for 30 years, and dont need any advice on how to handle them thank you.
I am NOT an alarmist, I am a realist and accidents do happen, especially when there is an entire camera crew in a small room with a black mamba.

There is nothing anyone here could say or do that would change my opinion on Neel's practices. If he wants to put his own life on the line, thats his problem, but he should never ever allow anyone else anywhere near his deadly pet.
At least gun owners have to pass a competency test before they are allowed to have one just by the way.
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