There are numerous unique career paths these days. One of them is the job of snake milker. If you want to choose a risky and exciting career path then you can study and prepare yourself to become a professional “Snake Milker” and know more about “Snake Milker Salary”.
Snake Milker: Definition and Job Description
A snake milker can be defined as a sort of special zoologist whose job is to extricate venom from different kinds of poisonous snakes and reptiles. The main objective of a snake milker is to make anti-venom from the extracted venom or collect and preserve them for medical research. The salary of snake milkers tends to differ from country to country.
The job description of a snake milker are as follows:
- Using special scientific instruments for venom extraction.
- Ensuring all the laboratory equipment is working and up-to-date.
- Studying and training to safely handle venomous reptiles.
- Acquiring experience in dealing with accidental bites from venomous snakes.
- Expert extraction, handling, labelling and cataloguing of different kinds of snake venom.
- Taking proper care of the snake specimens which consists of feeding, medicating, and documenting their behaviour, diet, and health.
How to Become a Snake Milker?
The very word “snakes” always sends chills down the spine of most people. However, certain people are fascinated by snakes and reptiles. They aspire to become “snake milkers” or herpetologists. The job of snake milking may be dangerous but at the end of the day, it can prove to be very satisfying and empowering. As a snake milker, you have to work in a serpentarium during the day. It is a special place which is specifically designed for snake specimens. The daily duty of snake milkers consists of taking out various kinds of poisonous snakes from their enclosure and making them bite a latex-covered jar for venom extraction. If you dream of becoming a professional snake milker then you need to:
- Getting a degree in biology, toxicology, or herpetology.
- A BSc in Zoology and get a post-graduate degree in herpetology can also be recommended.
- Experience in handling snakes, even as a hobby, is required.
- Gaining hands-on training by working as an assistant or intern in reputed zoos, serpentarium, and research facilities.
The Required Skills of Snake Milkers
The job of a snake milker is very delicate. It requires hard work, training, the presence of mind, and a lot of patience. It also requires the capability to handle and understand various kinds of snakes and reptiles. This is the very reason why many aspiring snake milkers and herpetologists work hard to be employed in renowned serpentariums, zoos, and research facilities as interns, researchers or assistants.
There are several important skills that all aspiring snake milkers are required to possess. If you do not possess these skills, then you should not consider choosing to become a snake milker or a herpetologist. The in-demand skills and aptitudes of a snake milker consist of:
- Being always conscious of personal safety and the safety of others.
- The ability to follow in-house protocols meticulously.
- Documentation and record-keeping.
- Having a lot of patience and the ability to keep calm under duress.
- The capability to work in a team.
- The ability to judge when to be gentle and when to be forceful.
- Absolute knowledge about the behaviour, body language, and breeding techniques of snakes and reptiles.
A Snake Milker’s Salary in The US States
As per recent studies and research, around 5.4 million snake bites occur per year. It results in about 1.8 to 2.7 million cases of envenoming or poisoning from snake bites globally. As per Payscale, the deaths resulting from snake bites range from 81,410 to 137,880 people per year. Countries like Australia, the United States, South America, and Africa are known to have the highest number of deaths from snake bites. These countries boast of considerable amount of death due to snake bites.
The profession of a snake milker is a highly controlled and monitored industry. Therefore, the importance of the profession of snake milkers cannot be underestimated. Several organizations like the USDA regulate who can sell and buy the venom extracted by snake milkers. The hourly rate of snake milkers in America is around $14.59 per hour. They earn around 2,500 dollars each month. One gram of snake venom can cost up to 2000 dollars in the market.
According to Payscale, the approximate total pay for a “Snake Milker” is around $36,224 per year in the United States. The base pay per year is about 34,293 dollars along with 1,931 dollars annually. However, the basic salary in this profession tends to vary among the states in America due to the various compensation and salary models of pharmaceutical companies and labor laws. The numbers tend to change due to the Total Pay Estimate model based on the information collected by the above-mentioned job portal. In addition to that, additional pay may also include crucial factors like profit sharing, cash bonuses, commission, and tips.
The hourly wage of a snake milker in North Dakota in the USA is around 18.98 dollars per hour. In the case of Alaska in North America, a snake milker can get around 19.17 dollars per hour. When it comes to Washington, the hourly wage of snake milkers starts from 18.64 dollars per hour. In New York, snake milkers make around 18.21 dollars on an hourly basis. In other states like Texas, Georgia, Massachusetts, Ohio, North Carolina, New Jersey, and Louisiana, the hourly wage of snake milkers ranges from $18-20 per hour based on the snakes they catch.
In conclusion, it can be said without a doubt that the job of a snake milker offers a lot of danger and excitement. If you need to possess some specific skills and degrees to become one. A snake milker is a special kind of zoologist who spends their time extracting the venom of various poisonous snakes. The extracted venom is used to make drugs for various health conditions like cardiovascular diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, pain caused by cancer, and tumours.