About Us

The Federation of British Herpetologists

The British have a long history of sharing their lives with their pets and the keepers of reptiles and amphibians are no exception. It is estimated that there are now more pet reptiles than dogs in the UK with more than one million people keeping reptiles or amphibians in their homes. Many are serious hobbyists and members of herpetological clubs and societies, but keepers have increasingly found themselves vilified and their hobby attacked by anti-pet keeping Animal Rights groups. The arguments used by these groups to discredit reptile and amphibian keepers are inevitably based on distortions of the truth or pseudoscience and have no basis in fact.

The Federation of British Herpetologists (FBH) was founded in 1995 to challenge these flawed arguments and to represent the interests of reptile keepers throughout Britain.

Headed and supported by specialist and experienced herpetologists from across Britain, the FBH exists to promote and support the responsible keeping of reptiles and amphibians. The FBH is an umbrella organisation to which the majority of herpetological societies are affiliated and represents the largest collective of experienced amateur and professional keepers in the UK. Put quite simply, the FBH is the voice of UK reptile and amphibian keeping.

The aims and objectives of the FBH are simple:
  1. To represent the legitimate interests of UK keepers at national and international level
  2. To oppose unfair regulation/legislation
  3. To manage a national information source of key facts/issues/statistics relating to reptile and amphibian keeping
  4. To create and maintain a strong, positive image for private reptile keeping.
Good Practice Guidelines

We have recently launched our Good Practice Guidelines, download them here, which were produced in association with the Reptile & Exotic Pet Trade Association (REPTA), the Ornamental Aquatic Trade Association (OATA), the Pet Industry Federation (PIF), the British Veterinary Zoological Society (BVZS), the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (RSPCA), The Pet Charity (TPC), Tortoise Welfare UK and many clubs and societies. This document has been endorsed by the UK Government and is the first such set of guidance to be adopted for the companion animal sector. This Document sets out guidelines to protect the welfare of privately kept reptiles and amphibians and underpins the Animal Welfare Act, 2006 by setting out the steps keepers need to consider to ensure they are complying with the legislation.

The FBH is frequently consulted by national and international authorities in relation to impending regulation and to provide fair and balanced advice. We also work closely with responsible animal welfare organisations and with local and national government regulatory bodies.


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