Snake Charmers in Jaipur

Met these snake charmers in Jaipur, India – not an ordinary event for me, but I sat down with them and picked up a snake. Later I learned that the snake charmers remove the fangs of the cobras that they capture, so the snakes die from internal poisoning after a few weeks. The photos are scans from film shot with a pocket camera and the quality is debatable…
For more unusual stuff, check out Paula’s B&W Sunday:
Or for more photos of this & that, Lucile has a “Photo101 Rehab” project:

34 thoughts on “Snake Charmers in Jaipur

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  2. This is most interesting. I had no idea that the snake charmers remove the fangs of the cobras that they capture, so the snakes die from internal poisoning after a few weeks. Very uncharming and highly debatable, don’t you think? 😉

  3. You are a brave man Cardinal! I wouldn’t have the courage even if I knew they were defanged! 🙂
    I am not so sure snakes get poisoned with their own venom when they are defanged. Some people even de-venomise them. The harm to the snakes is – I gather- from the fact that they cannot digest their food properly without the venom. Ought to be banned regardless.

    • Yes, you might be right. I haven’t read up on the subject, but just wrote it from memory and I have no idea where I picked up the information, but your explanation sounds plausible.
      And yes: ought to be banned regardless.

  4. I had to scan down VERY quickly from the photos….I have a “thing” about snakes. Fangs, or no fangs, you were a brave soul to pick one of those critters up.

  5. Pictures -excellent !! Forget the quality blah, blah. And good you see you. 🙂
    Snake charmers was an occupation when snakes were more than the human population, so it developed as a sport to capture and de-fang the snake.
    Animal Protection Act of 1972, banned hunting, capturing and killing of several wild species, including the King Cobra. Today it is a highly protected species.
    The snake charming is no longer a legal profession. Having said that, they still exist in some parts of India to make a quick buck. Laws needs to be strictly implemented.

    • It’s nice to have a contact in India that can provide information on this subject. Thanks for the info Andy!
      My experience is that no laws are strictly implemented in India – unfortunately there’s just too much corruption.
      I stopped to ask a policeman for directions once in India and instead of giving me directions, I had to pay him a “ticket” for some “technical error” with my bike (it was nothing wrong with the bike, but he made up something).
      Two times after that police waved me in to stop me, but I didn’t bother to stop for them and just waved at them instead (a trick I learned by observing an old Indian aunty on a scooter).

      • True ! I can very well understand that my countrymen left a poor image in your mind. Still do visit again. Will show you the India i am proud of 🙂

  6. Okay to start: this is animal cruelty, period.

    But the photo, is nice! You said the quality is debatable: well, I like it! It adds to the charms of film, and somehow sends a nice vibe!

    Cool photo!

    Kind regards,

    • Thanks Tieme.
      I’ve bought some film for my old Nikon camera and I might shoot some film portraits later on. The only problem is that I don’t have a scanner…

      • That is wonderful! I have yet to develop a film.. You don’t have a scanner at all, or no negative film scanner?

        Why not use your DSLR as a scanner 😉


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