smartSCANNDY faces snakes: Snappy crocodiles with razor sharp teeth, meter-long highly poisonous rattlesnakes and numerous tarantulas with thick, hairy legs. It is the mission of the Swiss "Herpetofauna Research Center" to cultivate rare and endangered reptiles. The zoo gives shelter to about 600 reptiles. Each year between 250 and 300 offsprings are born.And in the midst of it: smartSCANNDY, the PANMOBIL barcode reader.
"Before we used the PANMOBIL scanners, all inventories and feed lists were written by hand" says chief breeder Marc Jaeger. "That means: The whole data was first noted on a log manually. Then, in a second step, the entire data was typed into the computer. This was a time-consuming and error-prone process. By using the PANMOBIL scanner we not not only save a lot of time, but, even more importantly, minimize the error rate."
Feeding with smartSCANNDY
Marc Jaeger uses the smartSCANNDY on a daily basis. This means, he manages over 600 reptiles and organizes the feeding of about 250 to 300 young animals each year with a smartSCANNDY. The young snakes, for example, are individually housed in rearing boxes and have to be force-fed in the first few months with a special vitamin essence. It takes a few month of individual nursing care until they can finally swallow up young mice by themselves. In the wild these young snakes would feed on tree frogs. But for nature preservation reasons, the Swiss reptile experts prefer to use a substitute. smartSCANNDY simplifies the compilation of nutrition.
Every animal has ist own barcode assigned
The breeder can identify the genus, species, sex and date of birth of the animal simply by scanning that code. Data about each meal is collected and transferred via a standard USB connection directly to the computer. The PANMOBIL software automatically creates an Excel spreadsheet which can be easily processed.
"It's astonishing that PANMOBIL scanners aren't in use in more zoos and other laboratories yet” Jaeger asserts. "Every time we got visits from personnel from other zoos, they are always quite surprised by our professional technology and workflow. In many other zoos, this technology hasn’t been established yet. Too bad, because with the PANMOBIL scanners, the work is much easier! We reduced our error rate and have more spare time which we can spend on animal care."
With PANMOBIL into the future
In 2014, the Swiss "Herpetofauna Research Center" will expand the public "Reptile Expo" to host and help even more reptiles. Plus, they want to intensify research on the snake poison, which is already used in many medicines. Chief breeder Marc Jaeger is sure:
"If we grow, then definitely with PANMOBIL!"