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A Cold-Blooded ‘Friend’*

Trinidad Express / Snakes, possibly the most highly misunderstood creatures on earth, have always fascinated me! I marvel at their beautiful skin. Growing up, I would be excited to find a snake in our yard and became very upset with my father for killing the innocent creature. Over the last decade, working with these reptiles, I run the risk of being bitten. Following all safety regulations minimises this risk. Caring for venomous snakes requires professional training and expertise. When you think of pets, snakes are not the typical animals which come to mind. Snakes have been feared by many cultures over the years. I have always heard a local saying, “Horsewhip snake does beat pregnant women!” This belief is simply a myth and has been debunked. Research has shown that globally venomous snakes kill more than 90,000 people annually. For this reason, snakes have earned much respect. Not all snakes, however, have venom and can be cared for quite easily. These serpents such as the boas are much less risky to handle than those which are venomous. A bite from a venomous snake, including from the two types of mapepire and two types of coral found in Trinidad, can be deadly.

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