If everyone held a high level of regard for these kingsnakes, the need for conservation would not arise. But not all collectors respect the mountain kingsnakes; not all collectors respect the enviroment. Individuals who continue to disrupt microhabitat, ignore the pleas of their fellow herpetoculturists, and break the law cannot call themselves enthusiasts, nor naturalists--for if did they would be declaring themselves hypocrites. Only the spirit of the true enthusiast embraces the goals of the conservationist.

One exceptional man foretold the future of conservation nearly 80 years ago; his wisdom has been immortalized on the written page. Today, it rings truer than ever.

Merely this, that game conservation will never succeed merely through repressive laws. It must be founded on a respect for living things. No man would rather see a dead deer than a living one, no man that has not a profound belief in the doctrine of "Live and Let Live" has any right himself to live in a world so full of glorious living creatures.
--Aldo Leopold, 1919.

In order to learn how to act responsibly, in a manner consistent with the true enthusiast, please take a brief moment to read all of the following selections before venturing out into the field.

Center of Controversy: Rock Damage
Observing the Law
Field Etiquette
Ethical Considerations

More to come...

The Mountain Kingsnake Enthusiast's Site © Copyright 1998, Matthew J. Ingrasci