Daniel Hill – Owner of Hill Herp
My name is Daniel Hill and I am the owner of Hill Herp. I have been involved with reptiles in some capacity over the last 20 years. My reptile passion started as more of a fear when I was a young kid. I remember my mom frequently yelling at me and my brother to “Watch out for snakes” as we ran out the front door to play in the yard. That doesn’t mean I avoided snakes altogether, I remember my dad, uncle and cousins catching snakes at the deer camp and other random things involving snakes throughout my childhood. I live in Louisiana about 5 miles from the Honey Island Swamp. How could I not be involved with reptiles in some aspect?
My first pet snake was a rough green snake (Opheodrys aestivus) that my dad caught in the yard while cutting grass when I was around 10-12 years old. Me and my younger brother kept in a 10 gallon aquarium all summer long. I remember catching crickets in the yard and feeding it every couple of days. I also remember only handling it inside the aquarium for fear it would escape in the house and we would get in trouble with mom. We let it go when we no longer wanted to care for it.
I have various reptile stories similar to this spread throughout my childhood. Box turtles, running down leopard frogs, neighbors getting bit by cottonmouths, studying field guides…you name it someone got into it and I have some stories to tell.
During my teenage years, I seemed to have more on my mind then reptiles and did not really get into too much with reptiles except for the usually southeast Louisiana encounters. That all changed during my college years and I found myself drifting into the world of ‘foreign’ reptiles. My knowledge of reptiles before this was simply what I had found in my own back yard.
After keeping a ball python in college, my interest in keeping captive reptiles skyrocketed. Over these years, I have kept reptiles ranging from local reptiles such as Eastern fence lizards and rough green snakes to exotic reptiles such as coastal carpet pythons, dwarf monitors and bearded dragons. Having kept over 30 different species of reptiles over the years, I realize that each animal offers it’s own experience and should be treasured. Reliving my childhood days, I have also become an avid field herper and love to observe and photograph animals in the wild….more than I enjoy keeping captive reptiles.
As I develop this business and website, I will definitely share all those experiences along the way.