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Introduction to Field Herpetology

Welcome to my site dedicated to promoting field herpetology as a rewarding hobby and useful pastime. I hope you will find it interesting and inspire you to make some field trips this season.

Aims of the site:

  • Encourage people that just keep captive reptiles and amphibians to expand their hobby and go field herping.
  • Promote our hobby as a valuable conservation effort.
  • Provide details of field trips and hot spots I have been to over the last 30 years.
  • Give path to more detailed scientific research of reptiles and amphibians for those that want to take things further.
  • Provide regularly updated links to other web resources relating to herpetology.

Many people are inspired to go field herping after watching nature programs, a chance encounter of a herptile whilst out on a walk, or as an extension of keeping reptiles and amphibians in captivity. Like many people when they start this
hobby I expected to just walk around in the countryside and see loads of different species without much difficulty. It does not take too long to realise this is not the case and to get anything out of a field trip you need to put a lot of effort into
research and planning to increase your chances of seeing these often elusive creatures. Field herping can often be frustrating when you start out - I hope this site and the book I have written on the subject "Field Herpetology" will make
things easier for those starting out and also to provide food for thought for more experienced herpers.

Habitat like the Hardwood Hammock in the Florida Everglades shown below is a paradise for many species of reptiles and amphibians. Despite large densities of both number of species and individual specimens in this habitat you will have
to learn quite a few techniques before you start to make observations. At first you might not see anything at all.....but they are in there!!

Hardwood Hammock Florida

With some background research and some practice you will be able to find specimens of the local herp population with increasing regularity and experience the excitement of finding herptiles to observe in the wild. Persistence is the key
even if you have limited success at first and it always worth remembering that even the most experience field herper will days days when they find little or nothing to write home about.

To use the site navigate using the links to the left of your screen - the site has been broken down into sections to make life a little easier. Feel free to use the email link to make comments, ask questions or just to exchange views on the
world of herpetology - friendly response guaranteed!! Make sure you visit the "Wallpapers" page to download free herp related backgrounds for your PC or laptop. I intend to regularly update the site with field trip notes, field herping news and
hopefully some video of my excursions, so check back regularly.

Thanks for visiting my site!! Tony

All images copyrighted to Tony Poole 2008