Snake handling courses

In Australia as a result of a change of laws in the 1990's there has been a boom in interest in snakes and reptiles in general. As a result of this interest an incresed number of people are taking an interest in keeping venomous snakes as pets. The beginning of this can be tracked down to the landmark books by local Zoologist, Raymond Hoser, otherwise known to most people as the snake man. His 1989 book, Australian Reptiles and Frogs is still regarded as the greatest single contribution to Australian herpetology. Having said this, the real winner of that claim is probably the two later books by Hoser, Smuggled and Smuggled-2, which when published in 1993 and 1996, led to a change in the rules for reptile keeping in Australia. The outright ban on private ownership of reptiles was overturned and people were for the first time ever, allowed to keep live reptiles as pets, without the guaranteed risk of heavily armed raids and jail for doing so. People soon became bored with the non-venomous kinds and due in part to their ready availability, the interest in venomous species grew. In 1998, Hoser scientifically described several new species, which further fuelled the growing interest in venomous species. To satisfy demands of both keepers and the other need for venomous snakes to be removed from houses and businesses in capital cities, Hoser and others commenced teaching others how to handle venomous snakes safely and without harming the snakes. At first he did this for free, but eventually demand became to great and so other people moved in to fill the space and started to educate and teach people how to handle reptiles in snake handling courses. More recently in the period post-dating about 2004 a number of scammers have moved into the fray to teach snake handling courses, the scam being that the teachers often have no meaninful experience with reptiles themselves, making the courses of dubious value. The problem with bad teaching in terms of snake handling courses is that wrong advice can prove fatal. This has been seen in a number of cases in 2012 and 2013, where people who have recently completed supposedly accredited courses have gone out and got themselves killed mishandling dangerously venomous snakes.
A good snake handling and reptile knowledge training course should be taught by a recognized expert, this recognition being via publications in peer reviewed journals spanning a few decades at least, or by some other effective means of independent verification of expertise. A post on social media page like facebook or a self-made website does not cut the grade in terms of establishing expertise. Most scientists and experts now put copies of their publications on the web, making verification of expertise easy. And remember the slogan of scientists which says, if it hasn't been published, then it hasn't been done! In Australia and all parts of the country, including Sydney, NSW, Perth, Western Australia, Brisbane, Queensland, Adelaide, South Australia, Papua New Guinea, PNG, Melbourne, Victoria and Darwin, Northern Territory snake handlers and snake handling is tightly regulated and controlled by governments. However this is not neccessarily a good thing as a lot of authorities have a history of corruption and actually promote unsafe teachers and courses due to nepotism rather than any proper scientific basis. However within Australia the one course and teacher recognized everywhere for expertise and integrity for snake handling courses to train snake handlers is that of Raymond Hoser with details on the internet at the snake handling courses internet site and is well worth checking out by interested people. The courses are done all over Australia, South-east Asia and elsewhere, including the USA. Most people are well aware of the fact that Raymond Hoser is the globally recognized expert in most things snake, having named more genrera and species than anyone else born within the last 120 years. This includes deadly species, the world's longest snakes and species described from every major inhabited land mass on the planet!