Melissa Kaplan's
Herp Care Collection
Last updated January 1, 2014

Personal Herpetocultural and Related Reference Library


These are the books that I have bought or have been given through the past seven years or so that I have been studying and working with animals. These books are all widely available through a number of different herpetological and zoological booksellers, many university bookstores, and the publishers. If you are looking to build a library of your own, I have indicated a rather eclectic assortment books I highly recommend by highlighting them. Since species specific books may not be of interest to every one, I will confine the markings to books of a more general nature. My not marking books doesn't mean they are bad (unless otherwise noted) but that I assume everyone is not the compulsive reader and bookworm that I am.

For those interested in reading about or obtaining the books, I've linked some of them to If the book I have is no longer available, I've tried to link to a comparable one.

Note: my iguana-related books are in the Iguana Bibliography.

General Zoo/Vet Books

BLOOD, D.C. and Studdert, Virginia. 1988. Bailliere Comprehensive Veterinary Dictionary. W.B. Saunders Co., Neptune City, NJ. 1120 p. (See Saunders Comprehensive Veterinary Dictionary)

FOWLER, Murray E. DVM, ed. 1986. Zoo and Wild Animal Medicine. W.B. Saunders Co., Neptune City, NJ. 1087 p. (See 4th edition)

FRASER, C., Mays, A. 1986. The Merck Veterinary Manual. Merck & Co., Inc. Rahway, NJ. 1609 p

KIRK, Bistner, Ford. 1990. Handbook of Veterinary Procedures and Emergency Treatment. 5th Edition. W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia PA. 954 p. (See 7th Edition)

MCCURRIN, Dennis M. DVM, MS 1990. Clinical Textbook for Veterinary Technicians, 2nd Edition. W.B. Saunders Co., Philadelphia PA. 628 p. (See 4th Edition)

PRATT, Paul, ed. 1985. Laboratory Procedures for Animal Health Technicians. American Veterinary Publications, Inc. Goleta, CA. 480 p. (See 3rd Edition)

Reptile Veterinary Books

Association of Reptilian and Amphibian Veterinarians (ARAV). 1995. Proceedings, Second Annual Conference, October 27-29, 1995. Sacramento CA

Benyon, Peter H., Lawton, Martin P.C., Cooper, John E. 1992. Manual of Reptiles. Iowa State University, Ames IA, 228 p. ISBN 0-8138-2296-3

Frye, Fredric L. DVM 1991. Reptile Care: An Atlas of Diseases and Treatments. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ 2 Vol. 637 p.

Frye, Fredrick L. 1995. Reptile Clinician's Handbook. Krieger Publishing Co, Malabar FL, 276 p.

Grenard, Steve. 1994. Medical Herpetology. N G Publishing, Pottsville PA, 139 p. ISBN 0-9641032-0-6

Hartup, B. and Miller, E. 1993. Willowbrook Wildlife Haven Pharmaceutical Index. Friends of the Furred and Feathered, Dupage County Forest Preserve, Glen Ellyn IL, 140 p.

H.I.I.D.R.A. 1994. Handbook of Antimicrobial Therapy for Reptiles and Amphibians. ed. R. A. Pokriefka, et al. Herpetological & Ichthyological Infectious Diseases Research Associates, Adrian MI, 68 p. (not recommended).

Mader, Douglas R. (ed.). 1996. Reptile Medicine and Surgery. WB Saunders, Philadelphia PA. ISBN 0-7216-5208-5

Oldham, Jonathan C. and Smith, Hobart M. 1975. Laboratory Anatomy of the Iguana. Wm. C. Crown Company Publishers, Dubuque IA, 105 p.

Society for the Study of Reptiles and Amphibians. 1994. Captive Management and Conservation of Amphibians and Reptiles. James B. Murphy, Kraig Adler, Joseph T. Collins, editors. SSAR, Hays, Kansas. ISBN 0-376984-33-8

Warwick, Clifford, Fredrick L. Frye, James B. Murphy. 1995. Health and Welfare of Captive Reptiles. Chapman & Hall, London. ISBN 0-412-55080-6

Natural History/Ecology/Behavior

Alderton, David. Turtles and Tortoises of the World. Facts on File Publications. Oxford, England. 191 p.

Bennett, Daniel and Ravi Thakoordyal. 2003. The Savannah Monitor Lizard: The Truth about Varanus exanthematicus. Viper Press, Glossop, England

Burghardt, Gordon, A. Stanley Rand. 1982. Iguanas of the World: Their Behavior, Ecology and Conservation. Noyes Publishing, Park Ridge, NJ. 472 p.

Burghardt, Gordon A., ed. 1985. Foundations of Comparative Ethology. Van Nostrand Rheinhold Company, NY.

Cloudsley-Thompson, John L. 1994. Predation and Defense Amongst Reptiles. R & A Publishing Unlimited, London, England. ISBN 1-872-688-03-9

Ernst, Carl H., Jeffrey E. Lovich, and Roger W. Barbour. 1994. Turtles of the United States and Canada. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC.

Fitch, Henry S. and Henderson, Robert W. 1977. Age and Sex Differences, Reproduction and Conservation of Iguana iguana. Milwaukee Public Museum Press, Milwaukee WI, 21 p.

Heatwole, Harold F. and Taylor, Janet. 1987. Ecology of Reptiles. Surrey Beatty & Sons Pty Ltd., Chipping Norton AUS, 317 p.

Klauber, Laurence. 1982. Rattlesnakes: Their Habits, Life Histories and Influence on Mankind. University of California Press, Berkeley, CA. 350 p. (A 1997 unabridged edition is also available)

LeBuff, Charles. 1990. The Loggerhead Turtle in the Eastern Gulf of Mexico. Caretta Research, Inc. Sanibel FL. 216 p.

Martin, James. 1992. Masters of Disguise. Facts on File, New York NY. 176.

Sherbrooke, Wade. 1981. Horned Lizards: Unique Reptiles of Western North America. Southwest Parks and Mounuments Association. 48 p.

Zug, George R. 1993. Herpetology: An introductory biology of amphibians and reptiles. Academic Press, Division of Harcourt, Brace & Company, San Diego. ISBN 0-12-782620-3.

Herpetocultural Care and Propagation

Adrian, Christine. 1988. A Step-by-Step Book About Tortoises. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 63 p.

British Herptetological Society. 1992. Breeding Reptiles and Amphibians. Simon Townson, editor. British Herpetological Society, London, England. ISBN 0-9507371-51

Barnard, Susan M. 1996. Reptile Keeper's Handbook. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar FL. 252 p. ISBN 0-89464-933-7

Bartlett, Richard D. and Patricia Bartlett. 1996. Frogs, Toads and Treefrogs. Barron's Educational Series, Hauppauge NY. 104 p

Bjorn, Byron. 1988. Salamanders and Newts: A complete introduction. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 93 p.

Brown, David, Neil Carmony. 1991. Gila Monster: Facts and Folklore of America's Aztec Lizard. High Lonesome Books, Silver City, NM. 130 p.

Burghardt, Glenn E. 1963. Iguanas...As Pets. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 24 p. (out of date)

De Vosjoli, Philippe. 1995. Design and Maintenance of Desert Vivaria. AVS, Lakeside CA. Very good; I hope that he puts out similar books for other habitats.

Demeter, Bela Ph.d. 1989. Herpetological Husbandry for the Naturalist. 57 p.

Dunlap, Jim. 1990. They Don't Have To Die: Home and Classroom Care for Small Animals. Wordware Publishing Inc., Plano TX, 254 p.

Frye, Fredrick L. 1992. Captive Invertebrates: A Guide to their Biology and Husbandry. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar FL, 132 p.

_____ and TOWNSEND, Wendy. 1993. IGUANAS: A Guide to Their Biology and Captive Care. Krieger Publishing Company, Malabar FL, 141 p.

Ferrel, Shelly K. 1993. a hobby. TFH Publications, Neptune City, N.J. 94 p. (A pretty typical TFH iguana book.)

Griehl, Klaus. 1987. Snakes: Giant Snakes and Non-Venomous Snakes in the Terrarium. Barron's, Hauppauge, NY. 78 p.

Harris, Jack C. 1990. A Step-by-Step Book About Iguanas. TFH Publications, Neptune City, N.J. 63 p. (out of date)

Jes, Harald. 1987. Lizards in the Terrarium. Barron's Educational Series. 84 p.

Kelly, Kenneth. 1993. The Professional Keeper's Guide to Bullsnakes, Pine Snakes and Gopher Snakes. Reptile News Press, Boulder, CO. 58 p.

Lizardlover, Henry. 1993. Iguana Owner's Manual. Prymal House Publishing, Los Angeles CA, 135 p.

Markel, Ronald G. 1990. Kingsnakes and Milksnakes. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 140 p.

Mattison, Chris. 1988. Keeping and Breeding Snakes. Blandford Press, London. 179 p.

_____ 1992. The Care of Reptiles and Amphibians In Captivity. Blandford Press, London. 306 p. Misses some commonly kept species and iguana diet information off a bit, but a good basic book.

Reptile News Press. 1993. The Guide to the Reptile Body. Reptile News Press, Aurora CO. 58 pp.

_____ 1992. The Complete Guide to Reptile Nutrition. Reptile News Press, Aurora CO. 42 pp. Well, not in the same league as the chapter on nutrition in Mader's Reptile Medicine and Surgery book....

_____ 1992. The Complete Guide to Keeping Monitors. Reptile News Press, Aurora CO. 41 pp.

Roberts, Mervin F. and Roberts, Martha D. 1976. All About Iguanas. TFH Publications Inc., Neptune City NJ, 94 p. (very out of date)

Rosenfeld, Arthur. 1987. Exotic Pets. Simon & Schuster, Inc. 291 p.

Schaeffer, Dorcas, Kevin M. Kleinow, Lee Krulisch. 1992. The Care and Use of Amphibians, Reptiles and Fish in Research. Scientists Center for Animal Welfare, Bethesda MD, 196 p.

Seigal, Richard A. and Collins, Joseph T. 1993. Snakes: Ecology and Behavior. McGraw-Hill, New York NY, 402 p.

Sprackland, Robert George. 1992. Giant Lizards. TFH Publications, NeptuneCity, NJ. 279 p.

Staszko, Ray, Jerry G. Walls. 1994. Rat Snakes. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 208 p.

Staub, Richard E. ed. 1993. Captive Propagation and Husbandry of Reptiles and Amphibians. Northern California Herpetological Society, Special Publication No. 6. Sacramento CA, 120 p.

Sweeny, Roger. 1992. Garter Snakes: Their Natural History and Care in Captivity. Blandford Press, London, UK. 128 p.

Wilke, Hartmut. 1991. Turtles: A Complete Pet Owner's Manual. Barron's, Hauppauge, NY. 61 p.

Wynne, Richard H. 1981. Lizards in Captivity. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 185 p.

Herpetocultural Library Series

Advanced Vivarium Systems, Lakeside CA AVS will not sell individual books; minimum purchase is five of any single title. To get one of these books, you will need to buy from a store, herp society or one of the herpetological booksellers carrying them.

Appellate, Robert. 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Milk Snakes. 70 p.

Balsa, Michael. 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Savannah Monitors and Other Popular Monitor Species. 54 p.

De Vosjoli, Philippe. 1990. The General Care and Maintenance of Horned Frogs. 32 p.

_____ 1990. The General Care and Maintenance of White's Tree Frogs. 28 p.
_____ 1990. The General Care and Maintenance of Ball Pythons. 32 p.
_____ 1990. The General Care and Maintenance of red-tailed Boas. 48 p.
_____ 1990 The General Care and Maintenance of the Green Iguana. 32 p.
_____ 1990. True Chameleons: Part I Husbandry. 36 p.
_____ 1990. True Chameleons: Part II Notes on Popular Species, Diseases and Disorders. 28 p.
_____ 1990. The General Care and Maintenance of Leopard Geckos and African Fat-Tailed Geckos. 36 p.
_____ 1990. The Right Way to Feed Insect-Eating Lizards. 32 p.
____ 1991. Arachnomania: General Care and Maintenance of Tarantulas and Scorpions. 79 p.
_____ 1991. The General Care and Maintenance of Box Turtles Including Chinese and Malayan Box Turtles. 36 p.
_____ 1991. The General Care and Maintenance of Burmese Pythons. 44 p.
_____ 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Red-Eared Sliders and Other Popular Freshwater Turtles. 47 p.

_____ 1992. The Green Iguana Manual. 70 p.
_____ 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Green Anoles. 47 p.
_____ 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Green Water Dragons, Sailfin Lizards and Basilisks. 31 p.
_____ 1995 Basic Care of Uromastyx
_____, Robert Mailloux. The General Care and Maintenance of Bearded Dragons. 63 p.
_____ 1993. The General Care and Maintenance of Prehensile-Tailed Skinks. 56 p.
_____, Roger Klingenberg, David and Tracy Barker. 1994. The Ball Python Manual. 78 p.
_____. 1994. The Lizard Keepers Handbook. 175. P.
_____ 1996. General Care and Maintenance of Popular Tortoises. 54 p.
Klingenberg, Roger J. DVM 1997. Understanding Reptile Parasites. 81 p.

McEachern, Michael J. 1991. Keeping and Breeding Corn Snakes. 60 p.
McKeown, Sean. 1993. The General Care and Maintenance of Day Geckos. 143p.
Perlowin, David. 1992. The General Care and Maintenance of Common Kingsnakes. 71 p.

TFH Publications
Neptune City, NJ. 1994 unless otherwise indicated. Very mixed in quality and accuracy; typical TFH use of inappropriate photographs pushing questionable or inappropriate products.

Coborn, J. White's Tree Frogs.
_____ Burmese Pythons
_____ Ball Pythons
_____ Savannah Monitors
_____ Green Iguanas and Other Iguanids
_____ Caring for Green Iguanas
Heselhaus, R., M. Schmidt. Harlequin Frogs.
Hunziker, R. Horned Frogs.
______ Leopard Geckos
______ Green Anoles.
Mara, WP. Pine Snakes.
_____ Milk Snakes.
_____ Garter and Ribbon Snakes.
Patterson, J. Newts.
_____ Box Turtles.
_____ Red-Eared Sliders.
Rankin, W. JG Walls. Tarantulas and Scorpions.
Schmidt, W, K. Tamm, E. Wallikewitz. Chameleons Vol 1 Species
_____ Chameleons, Vol II Care and Breeding
Walls, JG. Keeping Poison Frogs.
_____ Rat Snakes.
_____ Rosy and Ground Boas.
_____ Skinks

Atlases, Encyclopedias and Field Guides

Behler, John L. 1989. Simon and Schuster's Guide to Reptiles of the World.250 p.

Behler, John Ph.D and King, F. Wayne Ph.D. 1979. The Audubon Society Field Guide to North American Reptiles and Amphibians. Alfred A. Knopf, New York, NY, 704 p.

Branch, Bill. 1993. South African Snakes and Other Reptiles. New Holland Books, London, England, 144 p.

Breen, John. 1974. Encyclopedia of Reptiles and Amphibians. TFH Publishing, Neptune City, NJ. 575 p.

Burton, Maurice. 1980. The New Larousse Encyclopedia of Animal Life. Hamlyn Publishing Group, London, England. 640 p.

_____, Robert Burton. 1988. Encyclopedia of the Animal Kingdom. Macdonald & Company, London, England. 476 p.

Capula, Massimo Ph.d. 1989. Simon and Schuster's Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians of the World. Arnoldo Mondadori Editore S.p.A., Milan, Italy, 252 p.

Cogger, Harold G. and Richard G. Zweifel. Reptiles & Amphibians. 1992. Smithmark Publishers, Inc. New York NY. 240 p (See 1998 Edition)

Conant, Roger Ph.D, and Collins, Joseph T. Ph.D. 1975. A Field Guide to Reptiles and Amphibians to Eastern/Central North America. 450 p.

Ferrand, John. 1988. Audubon Society Encyclopedia of Animal Life. Chanticleer Press, New York NY. 606 p.

Espenshade, Edward. 1990. Goode's World Atlas. Rand McNally & Company, New York NY. 367 p.

Halliday, Tim, Kraig Adler. 1986. The Encyclopedia of Reptiles and Amphibians. Facts on File, Inc., New York NY. 142 p.

Highfield, Andrew C. 1996. The Practical Encyclopedia of Keeping and Breeding Tortoises and Freshwater Turtles. Carapace Press, London. 295 p.

Mehrtens, John. 1987. Living Snakes of the World. Sterling Publishing Co., New York NY. 480 p.

Obst, F.J., Richter, Dr. K., Jacob, Dr. U. 1988. The Completely Illustrated Atlas of Reptiles and Amphibians for the Terrarium. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NJ. 815 p. A little out of date in classifications and some inaccuracies but on the whole worth the price.

Pritchard Peter. 1979. Encyclopedia of Turtles. TFH Publishing Co., Neptune City, NJ. 895 p.

Stebbins, Robert C. 1985. Peterson Field Guides: Western Reptiles And Amphibians. Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, MA. 322 p.

Tyning, Thomas F. 1990. Stokes Nature Guides: A Guide to Amphibians and Reptiles. Little, Brown & Co., 400 p.

U.S. Dept of the Navy 1991. Poisonous Snakes of the World. Dover Publications, Inc. 203 p.

Miscellaneous Books

Animals in Biology Classrooms, Including Alternatives to Dissection. National Associationa of Biology Teachers, Monograph VI. 1990. 146 p

Baker, Robert, David Mellor, Alistair Nicol, eds. 1994. Animal Welfare in the Twenty-First Century: Ethical, Educational and Scientific Challenges. Australian and New Zealand Council for the Care of Animals in Research and Teaching (ANZCCART), Glen Osmond, SA, Australia. 129 p.

Burton, John. 1991. The Book of Snakes. Crescent Books, New York NY. 143 p.

Franke, Joseph and Teresa M. Telecky. 2001. Reptiles as Pets: An Examination of the Trade in Live Reptiles in the United States. The Humane Society of the United States, Washington, DC.

Sinclair, Sandra. 1985. How Animals See. Croom Helm Ltd, Kent, England.

Wareham, David. 1993. The Reptile and Amphibian Keeper's Dictionary. Blandford, London, England. 248 p. Reverse the drawings of the pre-anal and femoral pores and you'll be fine.

Weidensaul, Scott. 1991. Snakes of the World. Chartwell Books, Secaucus NJ. 128 p.

Wildlife Rehabilitation Books

Anderson, Tami, AHT. Laboratory Procedures and Diagnosis in Wildlife Care. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 37 p

Emanuelson, S. DVM, White, J. DVM Physical Examination and Initial Care. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 33 p

Fowler, Murray F. DVM. Feeding and Nutrition of Animals in Rehabilitation Centers. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 37 p.

Gullett, Pat DVM. Basic Necropsy Procedures. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 25 p.

Jessup, D., Clark, B. 1986. Wildlife Restraint Handbook. State of California Department of Fish and Game. 160 p.

Leahy, J.R., Barrow, P. 1953. Restraint of Animals. Cornell Campus Bookstore, Ithaca, NY. 269 p.

Murray, Michael J. DVM. Wound Management. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 26 p.

White, J., Emanuelson, S. DVM. 1983. Emaciation: a protocol for recovery. International Wildlife Rehabilitation Council, Suisun CA, 5 p.

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