A major accomplishment for KFBG’s Wild Snake Rescue Project!
We have just launched a 6-month pilot project that focuses on snakes from Lantau Island. The project allows accredited and willing snake catchers to release rescued healthy native snakes immediately in suitable habitats within Lantau’s Country Parks, but away from the point of capture and human habitation. This is a big step forward as currently all “nuisance” snakes are transferred to KFBG’s Wild Animal Rescue Centre from all over the territory by the police. After a health check and confirming the species, we release all healthy native snakes back to the wild. The new project will reduce long-range translocation of snakes which has welfare benefits and will drastically reduce the stresses of transport and temporary holding. It also reduces manpower and resource use by KFBG and the Hong Kong police force. The reduced travel is a step towards sustainability too by cutting back on vehicle and fuel use.
We commenced the Wild Snake Rescue Project in 1999 in collaboration with the HK Police and AFCD. We can see the benefits that this current project brings, and this may include the welfare of many species that are put under a lot of stress during often long journeys to KFBG. It’s great that we have full support from our collaboration partners for the pilot project.
The long-term objective if the pilot project is successful is to consider launching similar release action in other parts of Hong Kong so that larger numbers of snakes will not have to go through long journeys to reach KFBG and can be released in natural habitat not too far from the capture location.
Snakes are important predators and help to maintain a natural balance in nature. Many feeds on rodents that may be considered pests and in carrying out this natural function they reduce the need for unfriendly means of pest control.
Here are a few slides to understand the pilot project more.