Who are we?
The H.E.R.P. is the first educational center in Belgium regarding Herpetofauna and Arthropoda.
The project was founded in 2015 by Bryan Minne and Laura Ruysseveldt, both Master of Science in Biology: Herpetology and Bachelors in Animal Care, with a specialisation in cold-blooded animals.
What do we do?
Today, the H.E.R.P. organizes guest lectures, practicals, exhibitions and workshops on cold-blooded animals and provides training for both private keepers, students and professionals on the keeping and handling of herps and arthropods. The H.E.R.P. also organizes several Herpetological Expeditions every year to various exotic locations.
Next to this, the H.E.R.P. conducts scientific research, manages conservation efforts and supports various research projects, both at home and abroad.
The H.E.R.P. also acts as a helpdesk and advice center for keepers, professionals and authorities with questions regarding the husbandry of exotic animals in captivity and the exotic animal trade.
Members of the H.E.R.P. also serve as advisors for the Belgian government, regarding the legislation on the keeping and sale of animals in captivity.
In addition to the activities mentioned above, H.E.R.P. also offers workshops and activities for kids with two side projects: 'ReptiSchool' and 'BugSchool'. Both branches organize educational workshops for children on herpetofauna and arthropoda in Belgium. They also offer annual summer camps, exhibitions, school events, birthday parties and school workshops for kids of all ages.
What is our goal?
The H.E.R.P. was established with the aim of improving the condition of reptiles, amphibians and arthropods both in captivity and in the wild. We want to reconnect people with nature and allow everyone to experience the excitement and beauty of interacting with these wonderful creatures. In addition, we want to make the public more aware of the presence of these animals in captivity, including the advantages and disadvantages of the exotic animal trade that comes with it.