WOULD the real snake man please stand up?
The reptile game in Australia is a cut-throat business, according to Australian herpetologist Raymond Hoser, which is why he says he is so protective of his trademark name, the Snake Man.
When The Daily Examiner published a story last week (Monday, March 26) featuring Clarence Valley's own snake expert Paul Jones, we soon received a complaint from Mr Hoser, who lives in Victoria, requesting that we immediately remove the words "snake man" from our online story.
Mr Hoser said he was concerned this description of Mr Jones would not only confuse potential clients, but may also cost him future business.
"He can call himself whatever he likes, just not 'snake man'," Mr Hoser said, referring to Paul Jones.
Mr Hoser said he registered the words "Snake Man" as a trademark in Australia several years ago and since that time has been watching closely for any infringements.
"We run a Google alert and whenever the name comes up, we jump on it," he said.
"We need to nip it in the bud to protect our reputation."
Mr Hoser said he had been known as the Snake Man for 40 years.
"I've written nine books on the subject and named more species of snake in Australia than anyone else."
Meanwhile, Paul Jones said he was surprised by the trademark claim, but said he is more interested in getting on with the job of rescuing snakes and other reptiles than a war of words.
Mr Jones has been a volunteer with Clarence Valley WIRES for the past 17 years and in that time has rescued and rehabilitated more than a thousand reptiles.
This weekend Clarence Valley WIRES held an induction course in Grafton with 17 new members taking part.