03 January 2006

Fancy a snake(s)?

BerlinBear avatarIf you're looking for a new pet for the new year, you could do worse than this guy (or should that be these guys?). But he'll set you back a fair bit. Albino, two-headed rat snakes don't come cheap you know.

The World Aquarium in St. Louis is looking to auction their two-headed rat snake, named We, [that is a genius name for a two-headed snake, ed.] on EBay. The Aquarium hopes We will fetch around $150,000, which will be used to fund education, conservation and research programmes. If the snake did fetch that price, it would represent a pretty tidy return on the $15,000 the Aquarium paid for We.

EBay, for their part, are looking to stop the World Aquarium from listing We, because auctioning live animals is against EBay's rules. Fair enough too. I'm not at all sure I can condone an aquarium auctioning a live animal over the internet, even if it does make for an interesting news item. Even if they need the money, you'd have thought that an aquarium would also have to have the welfare of the animal in mind, wouldn't you? And I just don't see how they can ensure that in an anonymous online auction. Maybe I'm wrong and they have a cunning plan. Who knows?

In any case, I'm not in the market for a rat snake, two-headed or otherwise. Snakes terrify me, even with only one head. They always have. I'd never be mad enough to invite one into my house.