TEENAGER Arran Clements likes his creature comforts.
So much so the snake-mad 16-year-old is planning to devote his summer to taking his exotic collection of critters and reptiles – which range from baby Madagascar hissing cockroaches that are less than an inch in size to an 11ft long python called Tigger – on tour.
Arran has set up Critters Crew 2 You and will visit schools and parties with his Amazonian pets, of which he currently has between 40 and 50 living in a former games room of his parent’s Tyldesley home, and educate people about them.
“I have loved animals for most of my life but when I went to a pet store a few years ago they had a snake out and I thought ‘that is cool’,” said Arran, of Treen Road.
“I got my first snake in 2011 and since then I have been working with my dad and instead of buying an Xbox like a normal teenager might, I spent it on animals.
Arran with Turbo the tortoise
“It seemed a shame that I was the only person enjoying them so I thought why not share my knowledge and educate others about them.”
Arran has just finished his GCSE’s at Fred Longworth High School and will study animal management at Walkden College before hopefully going on to study zoology at university.
“All the animals have different qualities that I like, but Pongo, my baby boa constrictor, is my favourite,” said Arran.
His dad Gavin has been behind him all the way and will help Arran get his business on the road.
“Most of the animals are called things like Tigger and Pongo, so there is a bit of a Disney theme and Arran hopes that this will make them less frightening for children – and adult,” he said.
“The main aim of the business will be to educate people about these animals such as where they come from, how to look after them, how they live in the wild and in captivity.”
To find out more, email amazonarran@Crittercrew2you.com, visit critterscrew2you.co.uk or call 07846 478004.
- Arran’s most expensive creature is ‘Tigger’ the reticulated Python who cost £300.
- His first snake was Penny the corn snake, followed by Evan the crested gecko. Arran started collecting millipedes last year, then cockroaches and praying mantises.
- He has 17 leopard geckos, of which 11 are babies and looking for new forever homes.
- Turbo the tortoise needs feeding daily but costs very little as his favourite food is dandelions (supplemented with other fresh veg and fruit).
- Tigger needs feeding least often and can go six weeks between meals comfortably.
- £25 a week is currently spent on food and supplements to keep the critters healthy.
Help Arran decide which animal he should get next below or by emailing amazonarran@Crittercrew2you.com
Amazon Arran's 10 interesting critter facts -
1. There are about 4,500 species of cockroach, however only four of these are classed as pests.
2. The reticulated python can grow over 20ft in length.
3. Millipede in Latin translates to a thousand feet but no known species have ever been found with a thousand feet.
4. The horsefield tortoise was one of the first creatures to go into deep space in 1968 alongside mealworms and wine flies.
5. Snakes DO NOT dislocate their jaws, this is an urban myth.
6. There are over 1,100 species of hermit crab and their favourite food is raw sewage.
7. The largest species of stick insect is the phobaeticus stick insect and they can grow over 22 inches.
8. The leopard gecko is one of very few gecko's to have eyelids.
9. The biggest rabbit in the world is the continental giant and can reach over 4ft in length.
10. The largest beetle in the world is the titan beetle; it can grow to 7 inches in length and can snap a pencil in its powerful jaw.