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 Please Note:   We do not sell the items you see on this page.

This is just a list of the tools used by venomous keepers.

Click any photo on this page to see a larger version in a new window.

     Handling Tools are "must have" items when keeping venomous snakes. With the plethora of handling tools available on the market, there is NO reason for anyone to completely free handle venomous snakes.

     Babies should NEVER be free handled. A small hook works fine for moving babies to medium sized snakes. There is also no reason to "tail" snakes under 3' long. They are too short and fast, and a bite is not a possibility, but a probability.

     "Hooking & Tailing" is a fairly safe way to handle larger venomous snakes. You use your hook to bring the snakes tail up and grasp it with your free hand, then use the hook to lift the dangerous end of the snake and keep it away from you.

     We've kept some of the fastest moving venomous snakes in the world, including Taipans, Eastern Browns, King Browns, Green Mambas, Black Mambas, and Papuan Blacksnakes. All these snakes can move and strike like lightning, but you can deal with them, using a hook or two.

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Outdoor Facility 25' x 50'

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Small Cobra Rack & Cages

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28 Quart Racks (Holds 60)

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Hatchling Rack (Holds 96)

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Large Cobra Rack

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2' Neodesha Cages

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3' Neodesha Cages

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4' Neodesha Cages

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6' Neodesha Custom Cages

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6' Standard Neodesha Cage

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Deli Cups

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Protocols.jpg (349030 bytes) Snakebite Protocols

     In Florida, USA, we are required to keep Protocols in our snake rooms. Protocols are instructions and information on how to deal with a snakebite when it first happens, and you would take it to the hospital, so the emergency room doctors will know what specie bit you and how to treat it. Protocols would include pertinent and medical information about you, contact numbers for family members, location of the facility where the bite occurred, contact number for acquiring antivenin if you don't keep your own, etc.

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Hooks

     Hook, are by far, the most commonly used piece of equipment in snake handling. Back in the day, we made our hooks from anything we could find.  Now, they can be purchased in all sizes, for use with the smallest hatchlings, to the largest Pythons.  Even a telescoping "Pocket-sized" model, similar to an old car radio antennae. You can also buy a large collapsible hook, for larger snakes, that is easier to store or carry in a back pack.

     Many of the earlier models were made from golf club shafts, but, more recently, they are being made of aluminum, titanium, and Stainless Steel.  Some are one-piece, and some have rubber or cushion grips.

     Snake Hook manufacturing has become an art in many ways. Some the best you can buy are available at Midwest Tongs. They sell many kinds of hooks, as well as many of the other types of equipment you will see on this page, as well as many other products not listed here. Their website is definitely worth a look.

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Tongs

     Tongs are a very handy piece of equipment, when used properly. When used improperly, they can injure a snake, and the injury can possibly kill the snake. The tongs pictured at left, are the most common type, but Midwest has made great strides in animal safety with their "Gentle Giant" tongs. Not pictured. They have wider jaws to better support the weight of the snake, and the rubber-coated top jaws help stop slippage.  The smooth bottom jaw keeps the snake from getting a good grip with their ventral scales, so they can not move through the tongs nearly as easily. They come in several lengths from 25" - 72".

 

Snake Bagger

     A good bagging system makes dealing with large, fast, venomous snakes, much easier and safer. We made a couple like the one pictured at left. We went to Walmart and purchased a cheap Bass fishing net. It is all aluminum, with an 18" handle, and the aluminum tubing loop is 14" in diameter. We also purchased some dark colored material from Walmart for $1.50, and had our mother sew it into a 5' long bag on her sewing machine. The loop comes off the handle, and you thread it through the bag, so the bag can be taken off and washed. We could have made the bag attach with Velcro, but we didn't have any Velcro at the time and we needed the Bagger right away. The bottom of the bag is open, and has a tie cord sewn to the bag, so you can tie the bag closed when in use.

     When a snake is in the Bagger, you can then untie the bottom, put the bottom into a separate snake bag, and release the Bagger, dumping the snake, safely, into the other snake bag, then seal the bag with a zip tie, electrical tape, or tie it in a knot. Then, tie the cord on the Bagger, and your ready for the next capture.  The dark colored bag seems to work better than a lighter color, as it looks more like an actual hole the snake can hide in. We first used this Bagger with a 12'+ King Cobra. He looked at the hole and back at me for a couple seconds, then I touched his tail end with a hook, and he dove right into the Bagger.  Awesome tool for under $10!

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Hemostats

     Hemostats can be used for may things. We use 18" Hemostats to feed frozen thawed rodents to our small venomous snakes, and we use the 24" Hemostats to feed our larger venomous snakes. The small Hemostats can be used to remove small pieces of unshed skin or eye caps, or they can be used to force feed venomous snakes. 

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Restraining Tubes

     The only problem we have seen with these tubes is that they will crack over time, and a large snake, that needs to use the largest tube, is also strong enough to flex their body and split the tube, so I went online to McMaster-Carr and purchased 3 pieces of polycarbonate tube with inside diameters of 2 1/2" (6.35 cm), 3 1/4" (8.25 cm), and 3 3/4" (9.52 cm).  These tubes can not be broken or split even with a sledge hammer.

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Sexing Probes

     Sexing Probes are the best, most reliable way, to sex adult snakes.  But, if not done properly, you can injure the snake.  "Popping" is the best method to check the sex of baby snakes.

     There are straight-tipped and ball-tipped probes. We like the ball-tipped probes best, as there is less chance of injuring a snake, not only from the person trying to push them in to far, in the case of a female, but also if the snake starts flailing around, the ball-tipped probes are less likely to do any damage.

Bags1.jpg (151940 bytes) Snake Bags

     Snake bags are the easiest way to transport larger snakes. Babies/hatchlings, can be transported in plastic deli cups taped closed, but anything over 3' - 4' long should be transported in cloth snake bags, if not a loclable box. When shipping venomous snakes, you are required to put the snake in a bag or deli cup, and then in a second bag, to ensure safety.  Snake bags can be made from most any good, lint-free cloth, or you can use old pillow cases.  Be sure to check for holes or weak areas in the stitching. A few places like Midwest, sell snake bags.

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Tweezers

     Tweezers can be used to feed snakes or remove left over pieces of skin that were not shed properly.  They can be used to remove ticks from recently imported snakes, or to remove uneaten food items from cages.

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     Scissors can be used to cut open eggs, if a hatchling can not do so, and of course they can be used during medical procedures. In a pinch, I used the straight point scissors to bore holes in a Rubbermaid container and lid so I could tie it closed with wire ties for transporting venomous.

PinkyPump.jpg (36705 bytes) Pinky Pump

     A Pinky Pump is used to force feed non-feeding snakes. To be honest, we find it easier to force feed baby snakes by hand or with small Hemostats if the snake is venomous.

Syringes1.jpg (58712 bytes) Syringes

     Syringes can, of course, be used to administer drugs directly into a snake.  They can be used to inject Panacur, Flagyl, Ivermectin, etc, into thawed food items to treat snakes for internal parasites.

     Syringes can also be used to aspirate eggs while inside the female.

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      A Catheter tube on a syringe can be used as feeding tubes to administer fluids and liquid/paste foods to non-feeding snakes, as well as oral medicines. They come in many lengths and diameters.

 

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Bandages

     Pressure Bandages are a must for anyone keeping venomous with neurotoxic venom.  The Pressure Bandage, when applied properly can give you much more time to get to medical help, when you have been bitten. In the event of a bite from a snake with hemotoxic venom, a Pressure Bandage may not be the best way to go, as it can cause much more localized tissue destruction, and increase the possibility of losing an appendage.

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Blocking Tools

     This is just an old piece of wood or broom handle with a piece of clear Lexan attached. It is used to block the opening of a trap box, so you can change the water bowl or spot clean the cage safely.

     You can also attach a larger piece of clear Lexan to the end of the handle, like in the bottom photo, so you can place it between you and the snake, if the snake is not in his hide or trap box, so they can not strike at you. Being clear, of course, allows you to see the snake at all times.

Glasses1.jpg (15848 bytes) Safety Glasses

     Safety glasses are a MUST if you work with Spitting Cobras.  Some people wear complete face shields, so if venom is spit at you, it will not only protect your eyes, but also the rest of your face and neck.  Some people are severely allergic to venom just being on their skin.  The glasses at left have worked great for us. The clear framed glasses were purchased at Lowe's.  The other glasses were purchased for wearing when I ride my motorcycle at night. Some venom has been spit at me from the side, and very slight bit of mist has gotten in my eyes, but not even enough to require washing out it out.  Even a face shield may not completely protect you from a shot from the side, so pay attention to how you are positioned at all times.

 

Cleaning.jpg (50753 bytes) Spot Cleaning Tongs

     These are burger flippin' tongs from Walmart or someplace, that just happen to work great at spot cleaning cages with substrates like Cypress Mulch and Aspen Bedding. If you use sand or Sani-chip type of substrate, you can use a large spoon with drain holes to spot clean.

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