Charles H. Hoessle Herpetarium behind-the-scenes tour!!!

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Just a few weeks ago while on the last leg of our national tour I had the opportunity to get a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the world-renowned Charles H. Hoessle Herpetarium located at the St. Louis Zoo. For the very first time, cameras were allowed to document my journey. Take a look at some of my favorite tour memories and highlights!

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The herpetarium is home to hundreds of different species of reptiles and amphibians. Only a small fraction of them are on exhibit for the public…the rest are behind-the-scenes in secret hallways and rooms that were once walked by the famous Marlin Perkins!

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The majority of the snakes that call the herpetarium home are venomous! In case of an accident, the zoo has an entire fridge FULL of antivenin.

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Here is an up-close shot of King Cobra antivenin. (The fridge is conveniently located right behind the King Cobra exhibit)!!!

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Here is the herpetarium’s kitchen where minimal food prep is done. The majority of the animals’ diets are made at a large separate kitchen then delivered directly to the herpetarium in the morning.

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The zoo’s herpetarium has two levels. The top level is home to the exhibits on display for the public. The bottom level is home to hundreds of animals off-display for either breeding purposes or quarantine. Here I’m holding one of my favorite creatures; the Alligator Snapping Turtle! This turtle was off exhibit on the lower level.

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Right behind the Alligator Snapping Turtles was a large Cuban Crocodile. The zoo is planning on putting the crocodile on display once an exhibit is constructed.

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Here I’m pictured with my tour guide Matt and a Fly River Turtle. The zoo has dozens of these turtles on and off exhibit.
Please stay tuned for part 2 of my behind-the-scenes adventure!!!