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  1. #1
    Registered User Caitlin's Avatar
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    Texas - how can we help?

    The situation for many keepers in Texas is currently a nightmare. I'm getting multiple reports of people who are still without power, running out of heat packs and other options for their snakes, and they are watching their animals die.

    I have zero interest in analyzing what Texas should or shouldn't have done to prepare for this situation. I just want to know if there is anything at all I can do to help, as I live in wildfire country, have been through my share of evacuations and animal rescues, and know how important it is for people to come together to help if they are able.

    Are there any central addresses for people organizing things like distribution of additional heat packs? I would gladly ship a bunch. Are there any groups organizing general support for reptile keepers/other pet keepers? I'd gladly send donations.
    Last edited by Caitlin; 02-16-2021 at 11:40 PM.
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  3. #2
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    This is a great idea, but to be of much help, we'd need to be in contact with someone "on the ground" in TX that is still able to function- to that end, I was wondering about any Herpetological Societies in TX- but when I tried looking some of them up, either they're unable to be contacted at all right now, or their last information online is dated 2 or more years ago. Additionally, it appears that many if not all have moved to Facebook, which I don't use at all. Even if they're reachable, time is of the essence, & I'm not sure that shipping is going to work well either, because of the weather- many areas include ice in their forecast now, besides snow & sleet. I HOPE they don't have an ice storm on top of this- that's a nightmare to cope with. ("Been there, done that")

    I'm just trying to brainstorm here- this is a great idea but how to implement? I fear that anything we can do from a distance will be too little, too late. Anyone else have ideas?
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
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  5. #3
    Registered User Caitlin's Avatar
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    There are local humane societies asking for donations to help distribute bales of hay and other supplies to try to keep outdoor animals from freezing to death.

    I'm having some success helping reptile people connect through Facebook - there are quite a few Texas keepers who still have power and who are offering to take in snakes. Also, some of the Reddit reptile groups have Texas residents offering to take in animals.

    I think the social media sites are the best option at the moment. Once things settle down again, keepers can help one another out by reminding everyone to get themselves set up for emergencies in future. I am seeing a lot of posts from people who have done little to no preparation for any sort of power outage situation.
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  7. #4
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    Re: Texas - how can we help?

    That's awesome that you're getting thru to some on FB, & that does seem to be the best contact method for this.

    We've talked about this before here...how to move long distance with reptiles, or what to do when power goes out. As reptile keepers, we need to remember that human emergency shelters aren't going to welcome snakes, & that there are things we should all have on hand- they're not even expensive at all- to be ready just in case for that "once in a blue moon" situation when life throws a curve ball. Moving long distance with a number of snakes & other pets was good practice, as was an extended power outage after a California earthquake years back, but winter storms (like the 2009 ice storm I got thru with my pets) are a special nightmare. Unfortunately, safety preparation don't sink in very well for most people until they live thru it, & when travel is messed up, it's essential to have what's needed on hand. I heard that a great many snakes were 'lost' after the 2009 ice storm- truly sad.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 02-17-2021 at 02:29 AM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  9. #5
    BPnet Senior Member dakski's Avatar
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    Re: Texas - how can we help?

    Caitlin - you are awesome.

    I wrote this a while back, but I imagine there are more ideas that can be added.

    https://ball-pythons.net/forums/show...-power-outages

    Boger - is it worth making a sticky for helping users prepare for power outages?

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  11. #6
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  13. #7
    BPnet Senior Member GoingPostal's Avatar
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    Right now I would think donations would be your best bet as anything shipped would take too long, it's truly a sad situation all around for the people and animals in that area. I told my husband to go start our generator to make sure it works although we never lose power here and I'm reevaluating my emergency and go plans. It can't hurt to be too prepared.

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  15. #8
    Registered User WrongPython's Avatar
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    Re: Texas - how can we help?

    Does anyone know if USARK is organizing something to help reptile keepers in Texas? I'd imagine they'd jump on that, or at least point people looking to help on where to go/donate.
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  17. #9
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    The miserable thing about these winter storms is that they can happen quickly & catch us off-guard before we have time to order supplies, & that's why we need to always have some things on hand.

    As I've pointed out many times, when I found myself surviving the 2009 ice storm that hit a large area around where I live, I didn't have any chemical hand-warmers or shipping heat packs.
    What I did (& do) have is a gas hot water heater, so while my home heat was off (for 4 days!), at least I had hot water, so I improvised: I filled empty jars with hot water to keep my snakes warm- they were bagged & put into ice chests (a few of similar sizes in each large chest, with a jar or 2 of hot water), & after 8-9 hours, the water was changed. They stayed very comfortable- none of my snakes got sick in any way after this close call. My dogs & I just bundled up, as the house got down to 45*.

    But even if I didn't have hot water available, I'd have "made" some- I had candles, & yes it would have been slow-going, but during an ice storm with no power, there's nothing else to do anyway.

    So candles are good to have on hand, as are metal chafing dishes (I have a few now). Also, bottles of water, & lots of it, for every member of the family & all your pets, enough to last a while. I have been saving all my empty gallon jugs from white vinegar & from distilled water (also bought some polycarbonate 3 gallon jugs made for water), & they're all filled with water & stored in my garage, if needed. You never know....(I try to empty them yearly to water my garden & refill them- it's good exercise too.) And you always want to have some non-perishable food on hand- things to keep you going without cooking.

    Think in terms of camping supplies (& sources of), even if you've never camped in your life.
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 02-17-2021 at 04:28 PM.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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  19. #10
    Bogertophis's Avatar
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    Re: Texas - how can we help?

    Quote Originally Posted by WrongPython View Post
    Does anyone know if USARK is organizing something to help reptile keepers in Texas? I'd imagine they'd jump on that, or at least point people looking to help on where to go/donate.
    I've contacted them & will let you know if & when I hear back.
    Rudeness is the weak man's imitation of strength.
    Eric Hoffer (1902 - 1983)

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