On Keeping Herptiles

Herpetology is a branch of zoology that deals with amphibians and reptiles but excludes fish. Derived from Greek, the name refers to “creeping animals.” Popular pets that fit this broad category involve frogs, toads, snakes, lizards, turtles, tortoises, and newts. More precisely stated, herptiles are cold-blooded tetrapods.

At Hikari®, while we predominantly focus on species-specific nutrition for aquatic creatures, we also feature a range of products specifically developed for the reptile/herptile market. Since these types of creatures are exceptionally vulnerable to temperature changes, it’s important to take proper precautions to guard against undue stress.

General Considerations
Before you opt for a reptile or amphibian, do research on their typical lifespan, diet, and other care requirements. Several reptilian options have very long lifespans or require specific heating conditions to thrive. Know what you are committing to upfront.

Bulbs
UVB bulbs need to be replaced every year to ensure that your animals receive the correct level of UVB to say healthy. Since UVB is an essential component that increases natural behavior, helps regulate feeding and breeding habits, and boosts immune system strength, animals in captivity – particularly herptiles can become paralyzed, sick, and even die prematurely without the proper amount of UVB.

Temperature/Humidity
Each animal has its own set of individualistic needs. We recommend that you keep herptiles separate to accommodate their specific requirements. Temperature and humidity are two aspects of care that typically would be altered to the species you own.

Nutrition
Ensuring that your herptiles get the right nutritional diet is key. Hikari® offers a range of items developed specifically for the unique characteristics of animals in this category. Remember, calcium and other vitamins are an equally important part of good care.