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Man Cited In West Palm Beach, FL For Keeping 10 Venomous Snakes

A man keeping 10 venomous snakes in a West Palm Beach, Fla. home was cited for not having the proper permits to keep the snakes, as well as keeping th

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A man keeping 10 venomous snakes in a West Palm Beach, Fla. home was cited for not having the proper permits to keep the snakes, as well as keeping the snakes in inadequate enclosures.


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According to the Palm Beach Post, Brian Buchowski, 29, was keeping 20 snakes in his home but did not have permits to keep the venomous snakes. Acting on a complaint, wildlife officials with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission searched his home and initially found 10 nonvenomous snakes that did not require a permit.

Upon further inspection however, the officials found three monocled cobras (Naja kaouthia) and a spitting cobra (Naja spp.) in his closet, a white-lipped pit viper (Trimeresurus albolabris) in a covered aquarium, and five copperheads (Agkistrodon contortrix) hidden in plastic containers under the sink.

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Buchowski was cited for not having proper permits for the venomous snakes, failing to have locks on the enclosures, not having the proper bite protocol on premises, no records of how he acquired the snakes, and failure to identify/report non-native species. The snakes were confiscated and placed in the care of another hobbyist who maintained proper permits to keep the venomous reptiles.


John B. Virata keeps a ball python, two corn snakes, a king snake, and two leopard geckos. His first snake, a California kingsnake, was purchased at the Pet Place in Westminster, CA for $5. Follow him on Twitter @johnvirata