The welfare of our animals is essential to the quality of our products, and we lead the field in this area.
We’re proud of our award-winning animal husbandry. Our animals are treated with the utmost care from the moment they arrive at Venomtech – after all, they hold the key to our success. New arrivals – Venomtech aims to prioritise purchasing captive-bred/born stock where possible and that progress is being made to ensure this. Responsibly sourced stock – go through a comprehensive quarantine procedure before entering our award-winning housing, protecting the rest of our animals.
The wider scientific and zoological communities are still unsure exactly what form stress takes in invertebrates and reptiles, and its true causes remain unclear. However, sourcing animals from responsible breeders is not only morally the right thing to do for the species, but also brings more value to us since these animals show fewer signs of stress. We were part of the first team to detect cortisol immunoreactivity in arachnids in response to full spectrum lighting, a sign that common husbandry practice may be detrimental to these animals.
In addition, it is not currently understood how, or to what extent, invertebrates feel discomfort. We pride ourselves on our high welfare standards, making every effort to ensure that the animals in our care are contented. Our team was the first to demonstrate that tarantulas respond to environmental enrichment in a similar way to mammals, and was commended for the impact this work had on improving captive invertebrate welfare, winning two awards.
Our invertebrate animals are fully anaesthetised during venom extraction, so they are completely relaxed throughout the procedure. Venom is collected using very light stimulation, and the animals then come round in comfort in their home enclosures. Naturally, our snakes and other vertebrates receive the same level of dignity and compassion as every other animal in our expert care. Biting and delivering venom is a natural process for venomous snakes, and we encourage this behaviour with our collection procedure.
We do not perform any experiments regulated under the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986 on the animals in our care.