Conservation by Education

You must unlearn what you have learned!!!

Yeah! You’ve got me there. I was also a big Star Wars fan.

The point is that most of us humans got wrong education over the past generations.
There are old books just like the bible, who’ve spread wrong believes to people all over the world until today. And certainly humans didn’t know much about reptiles many hundreds if not thousands of years ago. In the past 30 years people started to do a lot of research, and tried to understand the spatial ecology of a few species, and their behavior. In the end they found out very exciting stuff…

If reptiles would wear pants, they would perhaps pee them all the time. That’s not a joke!
If you catch wild snakes, they often urinate all over the place. They don’t want to hurt us.
They don’t want to fight us. They just want to be left alone, and get away.  To them we’re just huge terrifying predators, and they seem to know that they have not many options to survive an attack by us. Retreat or die! But if we don’t give them chance to escape, a bite will be the last resort. So, please don’t try to hurt or kill them. Let them retreat, and you’ll see. Nobody will get hurt.

Therefore the only logical way to convince humans of not killing reptiles can be education.

Presentation in Si Ri Panya International School

Presentation on a Charity Event at Tiki Beach Club Resort

We need to unlearn this nonsense of the holy book, the mainstream media, or even of our anxious parents and grand parents. And then we need to learn what these creatures are, and also what they want from us. Actually nothing! Just a peaceful neighborhood with us. We could easily learn how to live together with cobra nd co.
Nobody needs to get hurt or killed!

Snakes… yes, even the venomous ones… are not our enemies.  As predators, or even apex predators they’re very important for a healthy ecosystem. And we humans need a healthy ecosystem too.

What are apex predators? And what’s their purpose?

Apex predators serve to keep numbers of other predators or herbivores in check.
By weeding out the slow, weak, and dying animals, they increase the health of the population as a whole. However, they actually do much more than that. Left to their own devices, a herd of herbivores, like a deer, will stay in one place, eating everything down to the ground before they move on. However, a healthy predator population (such as our indigenous Reticulated Pythons) will keep a herd (or a population) moving around, looking for cover, and generally trying not to get eaten. This improves the health of the ecosystem as a whole. It leaves smaller plants and grasses for smaller herbivores, prevents erosion, and allows more saplings to mature. This reduces run-off into rivers and streams which in turn reduces flood damage. All of these things are linked to the health and movement of the large prey species.

Phangan has 3 natural terrestrial apex predators. The Asian Water Monitor (Varanus Salvator), the Reticulated Python (Python/Broghammerus Reticulatus) and our majesty (Ophiophagus Hannah). – (images below are in the same order)

They are actually all worldwide protected animals. This also applies for Thailand by the way.

While we can still often find water monitor lizards in creeks, back water ponds or brackish river mouths at the coast, and pythons almost everywhere even close to humans, the King already experiences an enormous decline by habitat loss, deforestation, and human killing, because of superstitious believe and fears, or by poaching for their bushmeat…