About New England Herpetoculture
What Makes NEHERP Different
Insider subscribers can log in to select their choice of a free reward for every single order over $50
Most orders process quickly, with supplies & feeder orders typically shipping within 1 business day. (Plants in 1-3)
Combine-ship plants, microfauna, herp supplies, and horticultural supplies together, without affecting guarantees
Our shipping policy allows clients residing in New England to ship perishables using ground service w/guaranteed live arrival.
We're proud to offer the most complete vivarium supply inventory online, and our catalog grows every year
Our small business has one of the most epic customer service reputations in the herp & vivarium industries
Our best-selling NEHERP brand items are of the absolute highest quality possible, and most are manufactured locally in CT
We've written some of the most complete, in-depth, and popular vivarium building & care articles online
Every animal we care for, and every animal we've sold since we started was captive bred within the USA We are experienced vivarium builders, and the team is always happy to assist clients with vivarium construction advice.
We're a Green Business!
Saves clients around $1-4 per order on the cost of a box
Reused floral boxes have high-bursting pressure, resulting in safe shipments
We use recycled paper/plastic void-fill only
No inefficient HPS, MH, or T12 lights are used at NEHERP
Our work areas utilize LEDs, T5HOs, and Mogul fluorescents
As of 2016, every vivarium we keep utilizes LEDs
We utilize 100% organic, chemical-free pest control methods only
No harsh chemical fertilizers or pesticides are ever used at NEHERP
Our policy is designed to increase support for rescues & small-scale hobbyist breeders
We are against the unnecessary wild-caught trade of Reptiles & Amphibians
Our Hobby: We ♥ Our Reptiles & Amphibians
While we no longer actively breed animals on a commercial basis, we still enjoy working with & caring for many different species of Reptiles & Amphibians. Nowadays, our goals focus on understanding the environmental requirements of each species. The hands-on experience gained from building & maintaining a wide variety of species-specific live environments has helped us to write our vivarium articles, animal care articles, design our vivarium supplies, recommend appropriate plants, microfauna, and more. We hope the educational tools & unique supplies offered on our site can help encourage more enthusiasts towards providing their animals with healthy live environments! Our team has experience with a ton of species in well over a dozen genera of exotic Amphibian, Reptile, & Invertebrate, and we'd be happy to assist with any husbandry related question we can.
Meet The Team
Mike has cared for exotic pets & live vivarium environments since he was a student, and has worked with over 70 species of animals over the years. Having grown up in & around his family's wholesale flora business, he spent much of his life working with & shipping perishables before opening New England Herpetoculture. Mike is responsible for product & business development, marketing, and coding the website. On the incredibly rare occasion that Mike isn't working, he spends his time gaming with Jess, working on cars, building stuff in his shop, playing guitar, pranking members of the crew, and of course spending time with his wife & son.
Jessica runs customer service & oversees order fulfillment, and has worked with over 35 different species of Reptiles & Amphibians. Having grown up in & around garden clubs, Jess put her horticultural knowledge to work for NEHERP when she developed the Horticulture division in 2012. Since then, she's played an even more significant role from website development, to product selection, and especially in customer service. When Jess isn't managing NEHERP, she spends her time gaming, working with her pet frogs, playing piano, singing, hiking, baking, and hanging out with her husband, Mike S. She recently became a Mom to her & Mike's first son, Michael Gus!
Mike W joined the team in 2013, just after the retail shop merged with the warehouse. Mike is an amphibian breeder, vivarium enthusiast, horticulturist, and has quickly become a jack of all trades at the shop. Mike takes the lead in the warehouse by packing more orders than anyone else at the shop, operating the substrate mixer, making fly cultures, Springtail cultures, Isopod cultures, building fly media, and a whole lot more. When he's not kicking butt at our shop, he spends his time growing terrarium plants, working with a huge collection of small exotic species, listening to great music, and hanging out with his Chihuahua, Buddy. Since Mike started at NEHERP, his exotic pet & vivarium collection has grown to dwarf Mike & Jess's, and even NEHERP's! Mike's a great guy who has the client's best interest in mind every day, and NEHERP wouldn't be the same without him. Mike W is in it for the long-haul at NEHERP, and also hopes to open an exotic animal educational display company with Mike S. someday soon.
Moriah is the newest member of the NEHERP team, and comes from an unlikely background of health care & services. In her short tenure here, she has quickly become an integral part of the team. Moriah sees eye-to-eye with Mike & Jess on how customers should be treated, and has been doing an absolutely fantastic job ensuring clients have a great experience at NEHERP. She's the newest member of the customer service team, and will be one of three people who'll be responding to your calls or emails. When she isn't at NEHERP, she spends time with her husband Alex, their two adorable children, and Boxer dog Bruno.
Sam has been a truly welcome addition to the team. A favorite of Ella & little Michael Gus, Sam is one of the primary order packers here at NEHERP. At home, Sam cares for an NEHERP-bred Gargoyle Gecko, and plans to grow her hobby as time goes on. When she's not doing an awesome job at NEHERP, she's riding quads & dirt bikes, driving an epic huge truck, and being a bit of an understated badass. Once out of college, she hopes to get involved with law enforcement, or to become a Conservation Officer.
Ralph is a retired Environmental Conservation Police Officer with the Environmental Protection Agency. He joined the NEHERP team in 2016, and helps out in both the production & greenhouse departments, while also acting as a general contractor & repairman for a whole slew of ongoing projects at the shop. If you've ordered substrate from NEHERP in the past few months, chances are, you've seen Ralph's handiwork! When Ralph isn't at NEHERP, he's riding his epic custom motorcycle, tending to his dart frogs & exotic fish, playing video games, working on his model trains, and exploring space using his tremendous telescope.
The VOAG & HS Crew!
VOAG & HS students in central Connecticut can apply to work at NEHERP, and we're lucky enough to have a great team of students in the shop. Carly, Cam, & Ricky are members of the crew for 2016, and they do an excellent job. The "minions" as Mike W. affectionately refers to them are a critical part of the NEHERP operation, and each member has his or her own specialization, outside of the typical greenhouse stuff. If you are a central-Connecticut high school student or teacher interested in this program, please email Jessica.
Jess & Mike's pride & joy, little Michael Gus comes to work with his mom & dad every day, and does an awesome job putting a smile on everyone's face. Mr. Gus Gus enjoys watching frogs jump around in the vivariums, watching snakes slither around in terrariums, and spends plenty of time jumping around on his overhead-crane mounted bouncer. Above all else, Michael loves playing with his best friend Ella the dog. If you've called into NEHERP any time over the past months since little Michael was born, chances are you've heard him making very cute sounds somewhere in the background. He's one adorable little man.
Ella Baby Doogus
Often referred to as Ella Baby Doogus, Foofus, Foof, Foo, and Foobacca; Ella is one of the greatest dogs on Earth. If you've been down to either of our locations, you've probably been greeted by the wiggly-butt Boxer dog we all love. Ella enjoys watching Frogs & Geckos move around in the vivariums, but won't approach any of the Boa enclosures. Ella strongly protests against the use of sunglasses, hoods, and hats, and has a love/hate relationship with our FedEx & USPS drivers. Despite her fear of snakes, like the rest of NEHERP's small staff, Ella absolutely loves her job.
A Brief History of Our Company
2003-2007: Hobbyist Years & The Experiences Which Sparked An Idea
While I was in high school, I kept a handful of different Reptiles & Amphibians as an enthusiast. It wasn't an especially large or spectacular collection by any stretch of the imagination, but it was a fun way to begin learning. A few years went by, and while I was working & in college, I began breeding some different species on the side. I started with Leopard Geckos, got into Day Geckos, Bearded Dragons, and a few more common species. After my first seasons as a small-scale breeder, I became even more enthusiastic about the herp hobby.
Then I attended a Reptile/Amphibian expo. The vast majority of small business owners, breeders, and enthusiasts who were vending at the show proved to be an entirely different, more enthusiastic & far more educational resource compared a traditional chain or large-scale pet shop. In most cases, the health & vibrancy of the animals offered by many of the small-scale breeders was a notable improvement over any I'd seen in stores. I received great advice, was pointed towards lots of great online resources, and the experience drastically changed my perspective. On the way home from the expo I remember thinking, "These people know what they are doing! Why don't more full-scale businesses offer those kinds of animals, resources & support?". I continued working with a number of different species, and my hobby grew a bit larger.
The ball really didn't start rolling until back in 2008, when I started testing different types of live moss in vivariums. Once I found a species which could thrive in a live vivarium environment, I began researching care & propagation techniques in hopes that I could eventually market the product. Eventually, the first samples of NEHERP moss were offered on forums for hobbyists to try, and with positive feedback on the product, we became the 1'st company online to offer pre-processed live moss for vivariums. During this time, NEHERP was an incredibly tiny basement business, with a grow room & stock area packed in a small space behind my apartment's kitchen. I grew up working for my family's business New England Wholesale Florist, and so the name "New England Herpetoculture" seemed like a natural choice.
Towards the end of 2010, NEHERP opened a small retail store in New Britain CT, which offered everything available online plus an assortment of (strictly) captive bred, and often locally-bred reptiles & amphibians. During that time, the shared warehouse space in Meriden was primarily used for overstock supplies & plants, and the day-to-day business & online order processing took place at the retail shop.
With the new products launched, things began to grow at a quicker rate. I finished the 4'th version of our website in 2012, and it was wasn't terrible, but wasn't quite "good" yet. That site was the 1'st one to display the stylized "" logo as the header, which has helped to set our brand apart to this day. We began carrying the Jungle Dawn LED line, and our first vivarium lighting kits were added to the lineup. Eventually, different (non-enclosure specific) plant packs were added too. We didn't realize it at the time, but these "vivarium kit" products were absolutely the way of the future for NEHERP.
NEHERP V.5 launched in early 2014, was NEHERP's first 100% fully hand-coded site, and was the biggest improvement yet. Client reception was pretty positive, and the team was floored. Finally a halfway decent website! Between the new site & revised care articles, search engine rankings during this time put our company within the top 3-4 results for topics related to vivariums.
Shortly after the site launched, a handful of new products were released too. NEHERP Substrate V2 was great for a bunch of different species, and was a real hit with the Gecko, Snake, and Tree Frog hobbyists. Modular Cork Planters & Gecko Background Kits were also pretty popular with the Gecko keeping community. Other new products included a freshly revised Fly Media, NEHERP Glass Inserts, Custom Background Texture Mix, Vertical Conversion Kits, and tons of new wood decor options. The most popular development was our NEHERP Moss Slurry, which took nearly a year of testing to develop.
2016-Present: New Website, Location, and Baby!.
I was able to launch Version 6 of our website (the current one) in January 2016, after months & months of coding. Our little company has managed to get within the top 1-2 search engine results for most vivarium related topics, and I'm thrilled that the new site has been so well received. There are lots of new features to mention, but the most pivotal is probably the Vivarium Builder, and it's supporting Vivarium Kits. We now offer over 170 different vivarium related kits for all 30 of the most common enclosure sizes, making our site the most comprehensive vivarium support page online. We created Background Decor Kits (both light & heavy duty), Vivarium Substrate Kits, Lighting Kits, and of course Complete Kits, all indexed by enclosure size. Each kit can be custom-tailored to a specific species, and many kits have different options to consider & adjust according to a client's end-goal. In all, there are over 1,000 possible configurations using the Vivarium Building Tool. We're proud of it, and it's already proven to be our most popular store related page since the new site launched. By February 2016, each of the vivarium-related articles was re-written again to include the most up-to-date information, in an effort to offer the best support to our clients.