Rising Awareness leads to more Snake Rescues in the Capital
Increased awareness about snakes and reptiles is beginning to make a difference. While earlier, people would perceive snakes as dangerous and were often killed the moment they were spotted, continued efforts of wildlife protection and conservation organizations like Wildlife SOS to sensitize people about these maligned reptiles has begun to show a positive change as more and more rescue calls are being received from all parts of the National Capital Region.Tweet
-- Snakes evoke fear and aversion in the hearts of people. Lack of awareness about them leads to people being fearful and apprehensive about these reptiles. Earlier, people would instantly kill the snake when they spotted one but gradually they are beginning to understand their importance and the vital role they play in the ecosystem. Furthermore not all species of snakes are venomous. Knowledge and awareness about the true nature of snakes has begun to significantly reduce the fear and violence against these largely misunderstood reptiles.
Wildlife SOS works round the clock responding to multiple snake rescue calls every day. Rescues range from that of extremely venomous snakes like the cobra and common krait, to relatively harmless and non-venomous ones like the wolf snake and rat snake. Python rescues are also quite common. The NGO's advises callers to not meddle with the reptile and maintain a safe distance until they reach the location. Having both expertise and experience in this field, the team safely rescues the snake without causing hurt or damage to anyone. The organization helps rescue more than 300 snakes and other reptiles annually in Delhi alone.
Wildlife SOS also organizes a number of awareness programs and workshops to sensitize people and impart knowledge about these much maligned reptiles. People are taught how to cope in situations where they would confront a snake, how to recognize major species without getting too close, and also primary first aid in case of a snake bite. The interaction also helps bust some popular myths and false perceptions about snakes that help people to get rid of unfounded fear.
A member of the Wildlife SOS Rapid Response team said, "Over the years, the number of snake rescue calls has increased manifold. People now take extra care to not hurt the reptile. Sometimes, they even call the police or forest department who route the call to us. We get maximum calls in the monsoon season, where the number of rescues jump up by almost 60 percent compared to other seasons. The calls start declining with the advent of winter because snakes become less active in winters and limit themselves to their burrows."
Kartick Satyanarayan, Co-founder, Wildlife SOS said, "Snakes are magnificent reptiles but hugely misunderstood. Very few snake species in Delhi are actually venomous and even these snakes will not attack until provoked or threatened. We are very glad that people have become so aware that they consider calling experts instead of trying to deal with the matter themselves, or worse, killing the snakes. Our team has highly trained professionals who can deal with situations efficiently. In case people come across a snake around their vicinity, we request them to immediately call our 24 hour rescue helpline (9871963535) for assistance."
Notes to Editor
About Wildlife SOS
A Non-Profit Organization, Wildlife SOS is one of the largest rescue & conservation charities in South Asia. They operate ten wildlife rehabilitation facilities across India, including the world's largest Sloth Bear Rescue Centre and two Elephant Care Centres, with 23 rescued elephants under their care. Wildlife SOS runs tribal rehabilitation projects that aim to create alternative livelihoods for poachers and other indigenous communities that used to exploit wildlife for livelihoods. Additionally, they run a leopard rescue centre, a Wildlife Hotline in New Delhi and 'Forest Watch' which is an anti-poaching wildlife crime enforcement unit.