SAWE is just a call away to rescue a snake from your home

Interested in learning to catch snakes? You can now learn the tricks of rescuing them and not just catching them
SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.
SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.Photo: Gomantak Times

The number of people seeking the contact details of those who catch snakes is increasing as more people report incidents of snakes in the precincts of their houses.

The word is still ‘catch’ for many, until you meet people like Charan Desai, who talks about rescuing snakes, going beyond the definition of the word ‘catching’.

SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.
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Charan, founder and president of the NGO SAWE (Study and Awareness of Wildlife and Environment), says the interest to learn about rescuing snakes is increasing, and this can be seen from the overwhelming response they have received for the snake rescue trainings they conduct.

For the training that will be held on Dec 10, 2023 in Ponda, they have closed registrations because the seats are full. “We are full for this training session and are getting registrations for subsequent sessions which we will announce soon,” says Charan.

A snake rescue training session by SAWE in progress.
A snake rescue training session by SAWE in progress.Photo: SAWE

COURSE CURRICULUM

SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats. Many evince a keen interest in learning to rescue snakes, but there’s no platform or place to learn how to do it, explains Charan.

“Wildlife, including snakes, are protected under law,” he says. “We teach participants the legal provisions connected with rescuing snakes, and the right way to use rescue equipment, among other things. There’s also a session by a veterinarian on administering first aid to an injured animal or snake.”

SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.
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The snake rescue training covers snake identification, rescue protocols and regulations, rescue equipment application and snake conservation and ecology. Those who complete it are given a certificate.

During the training, no live snakes are used, clarifies Charan. Instead participants will be invited to accompany snake rescuers when they are called to rescue snakes. There are further plans to hold advanced snake rescue training courses soon, he discloses.

SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.
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RESCUING SNAKES IS NOT RESTRICTED TO MEN

Contrary to popular belief that women are wary of slimy, crawly creatures, Charan reveals that the training sessions get a lot of participants who are women.

“We impart training to those who are above 18 years,” Charan says. “Rescuing snakes is not gender or age specific. Participants should only have the passion, from inside them, for the need to save the animal.”

He adds, “We see a lot of participants who are ladies and even people who are elderly.”

Participants, who successfully complete  an animal rescue training session, receive certificates.
Participants, who successfully complete an animal rescue training session, receive certificates. Photo: SAWE

THE PEOPLE CHALLENGE

More than learning to handle snakes, it’s learning to deal with people that is tough, says Charan.

Says he, “People have so much fear of snakes. During our rescue, we encounter people who tell us to take the snake out of their house and once we rescue the snake, they try to kill it. Or, we will get calls asking to take away a snake spotted in a forested area.”

SAWE regularly holds awareness sessions on human-wildlife conflict, snake bites, rescue of wildlife, etc in schools, colleges and panchayats in Goa.
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“We have to explain to people the importance of snakes to the ecology and what’s causing human-wildlife conflict,” he adds.

He goes on, “During the training, we teach participants to deal with people and their fears and how to explain to them about snakes and their habitation.”

To register for a snake rescue training course by the SAWE (Study and Awareness of Wildlife and Environment) NGO, contact +91 94044 56060 or +91 9764 318735.

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