Creepy, crawly and so much fun

The Show Me Snakes Reptile and Exotics expo. helps to foster a greater understanding about reptiles and other “scary” animals

The Show Me Snakes Reptiles and Exotics Expo. during the Dec. 5 event.

Nataleigh Scheller-Houska

The Show Me Snakes Reptiles and Exotics Expo. during the Dec. 5 event.

When most people think of a pet they automatically picture animals like cats, dogs, maybe even a goldfish, though as a reptile/invertebrate hobbyist and enthusiast, my pets tend to be considered by many as a little bit creepy and crawly. From snakes and turtles to spiders and scorpions, my pets may be a little outside of the norm, but in my mind they are just as cute and lovable.

Instead of your usual pet store, when I am looking for pets and items associated with their care, I go to The Show Me Snakes Reptile and Exotics expo. This is a local event that occurs several times a year within St. Louis and many surrounding states. It is where breeders, vendors and exotic pet lovers come together to sell and buy exotic animals and the equipment necessary to keep them. This event is not only a place to acquire these unique pets, but it is also a place to learn about and foster a greater understanding and appreciation for all kinds of animals.

Moving a curly hair tarantula into his new enclosure. (Nataleigh Scheller-Houska)

I recently attended the Dec. 5 show in Bridgeton, MO. It is typically held at the Machinists Union Hall and as usual, I had a great time. It is fun to get to speak with people that share your interest, especially when it is not as common as some topics. An additional bonus to this event was picking up some new pet spiders to add to my collection.

I would encourage anyone interested exotic pets to attend one of these expos. They are well planned and the vendors that I met all seem knowledgeable. I find them to be enthusiastic about what they do and that they put lots of time and effort into breeding and caring for their animals.

Overall, this event is fun and family-friendly with a central goal to educate about and introduce people to reptiles and exotic animals. I suspect that after seeing these animals up close, you might be surprised by just how interesting and entertaining that they can be.