Dozens of dead tarantulas, snakes and venomous reptiles recovered from Cork home

NewsBy Shuki Byrne
Huge: The 20cm bird-eating spider discovered at the house in Cork (CSPCA)
Huge: The 20cm bird-eating spider discovered at the house in Cork (CSPCA)

More than 50 dead tarantulas, snakes and reptiles have been discovered in a house in Cork in what is believed to be the largest seizure of its kind.

The Cork Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (CSPCA) were alerted to the property over concerns the animals at the house were being mistreated.

A member of the public who was in charge of the property while the owner was away made contact after becoming concerned many of them had died. 

"Unfortunately we removed 48 boxes of dead animals, there were 54 carcasses there in various states, be it tarantulas, snakes and scorpions," CSPCA manager Vincent Cashman told RTE Radio 1.

"We also found live tarantulas and different kinds of snakes also."

The animals were seized after permission was granted by the property owner, who is on holidays currently with his wife and children. 

CSPCA employees entered the Douglas home and found 44 live non-venomous snakes, scorpions, tarantulas, a 20cm bird-eating spider, an exotic 10cm centipede and two parrots which were being kept in appalling conditions, the Irish Examiner said. 
Mr Cashman told RTE there was "no problem" with owning any of the species as pets but he was "shocked" at the appalling conditions that these animals were being kept in.
"In this particular case, when we're dealing with such a large quantity of animals, this guy maybe just became overwhelmed with the amount that he had," he told Morning Ireland radio show.
"It's okay for people to keep them, they just have to be knowledgeable. People don’t realise that the small 12in to 14in iguana they buy will grow to be six foot long. It is not a goldfish. A lot of people buy these animals on a whim but that’s not to say there are great reptile owners out there."
He said the majority of the animals will now be rehoused in Fota Wildlife and Tayto Park. 
"What we've done is we've made contact with the reptile houses in Fota Wildlife Park and Tayto Park, who will be taking a lot of the animals," said Mr Cashman.
"These animals need specialist care and shouldn’t be bought on a whim. What we try to do is to relieve the pressure on animal owners before it becomes a bigger problem."
"This kind of thing can’t be done on a whim. You need to do your research and if you’re going to keep exotic pets like this, you must do it responsibly,” Mr Cashman added. 
“And if you’re struggling, call for help. There are agencies who can help.”