Tools Used by a Herpetologist

Herpetologist with turtles
••• Stephen Chernin/Getty Images News/Getty Images

A herpetologist--a scientist who studies amphibians and reptiles--encounters many interesting and potentially dangerous animals. There are many tools a herpetologist can use to handle, observe and assist amphibians and reptiles.

Snake hook

A herpetologist can use a snake hook to safely pick up snakes. This hook is specially designed with a shaft that's anywhere from 1-4 feet long and a hook on the end. If a snake is venomous or acting aggressively, a herpetologist will use a snake hook to gently pick up the snake in the middle of the body.


Herpetologists may encounter venomous snakes that could potentially inject deathly venom with a single bite. If a herpetologist knows she will be working with a particular type of venomous snake, she will typically keep antivenom available. If the herpetologist is bitten, the antivenom can be injected into the blood system to counteract the venom.


Gloves are also important protective gear for herpetologists. Sturdy gloves will protect against bites by a lizard or snake. Additionally, latex gloves will protect a frog or salamander from absorbing chemicals through its skin that might be present on the herpetologist's hands.


Some reptiles or amphibians have the ability to spit venom or other harmful substances toward the eyes of another animal, and the chemicals can injure a herpetologist. Goggles or a facemask can be worn for protection.


Herpetology isn't all about dealing with dangerous animals. It is often important for a herpetologist to measure the weight of a reptile or amphibian. These animals can be weighed on a scale to gauge their rate of growth and evaluate the animal's health.

Related Articles

Body Parts of a Crocodile
The Dangers of Opossums
What Animals Eat Turtles?
King Cobra Snake Facts
What Adaptations Do Anacondas Have to Survive?
Symbiotic Relationships for Rhinos
Facts on Newts for Kids
List of Animals That Can Carry Rabies
Boa Constrictor Facts for Kids
Importance of Reptiles in the Ecosystem
Adaptation of an Opossum
How to Identify Red & Black Striped Snakes
How Many Worms Does a Baby Bird Eat?
What Flying Insects Live in Your Hair, Skin & Home?
What Animals Eat Worms?
What Is a Horned Frog?
Five Physical Adaptations for Anteaters
What Are the Dangers of Bobcats to Humans?
Why Do Animals Lick Their Newborns?
Snakes & Spiders in Santa Fe, New Mexico

Dont Go!

We Have More Great Sciencing Articles!