Ty Smith

Joined: Apr 20, 2017 Last Active: Jul 16, 2024 iNaturalist

Checkout our website for Herping information: https://www.herpingva.org/

In my neck of the woods, most call me the Snake Man. I am just a simple, Herp, Bird, and Fish guy (quickly falling into Leps and Odes), from South-central Virginia, an area which is very under studied. I hope to fix that. I have studied herps for over 15 years, and specialize in East Coast species ID and southeastern species habitat/distribution. I do a lot of my research now a days on mapping the Barking Treefrog (Hyla gratiosa), which many people say is the “rarest frog in VA”, and the Southeastern Five-lined Skink (Plestiodon inexpectatus). In case you haven’t noticed, when it comes to animals, I love the oddballs.

I am a Master Naturalist (with over 2,000 hours of service), former Park Naturalist, Virginia Breeding Bird Atlas II Volunteer (VABBA2), Virginia Society of Ornithology (VSO) Member, Virginia Herpetological Society (VHS) Member, as well as the President of the Margret Watson Bird Club in Farmville, Virginia. I am very active on eBird, I curate a few projects on iNat, and review many, many Herp observations... and some other stuff... I also specialize in Herp and Fish husbandry, and have several species I work with in the home.

The one thing I love more than the animals I work with, is educating the public on these amazing animals. I do a number of Animal Education Talks, Walks, and Displays around the area. In doing so, I work with several State Parks, Soil and Water Districts, research stations, schools, and libraries as well as Fort Barfoot (Pickett). In 2020, I undertook a massive big year for Herps, mostly focusing on Virginia. Then I looked at the leaderboards, and realized I needed a December Florida trip, and that is what I did. This trip put me at the top of World’s 2020 herp leaderboard by species. The link for that project is below.

If you need to contact me for any reason, please go through the Herping Virginia website, especially if you want me to give a talk/program (I used to give my personal email but it has become such a "junk drawer" I can't keep up with messages). I have added that to my list of things that I think anyone who wants to know me should check out. I will gladly answer any Herp, Bird, Fish, or Mammal ID questions; guide any herper/birders in Southside Virginia; or lead a hike, set-up a display, or speak at a club/school/ect. Feel free to tag me in any Herp observations, and if it is out of my expertise, I will find someone who can ID (to tag me just add to comments of the observation: @tysmith). I am willing to find homes for any captive reptiles that need a home as well.

eBird Profile: https://ebird.org/profile/ODQ4Mzg2

Herps of Virginia Project: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/herps-of-virginia

Species of Importance of Virginia's Nottoway River Basin: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/species-of-importance-of-virginia-s-nottoway-river-basin

Snakes of South-Central Virginia: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/snakes-of-south-central-virginia

Fort Pickett Herp Survey Observations: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/fort-pickett-herpetological-survey

Ty’s 2020 Big Herp Year: https://www.inaturalist.org/projects/ty-smith-s-herp-big-year-2020

I also did a few videos with Koaw Nature (@koaw):
My Big Year- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=djUb5I0nlfw&t=52s
Turtles- https://youtu.be/1ewdtlzJOps
Toad ID- https://youtu.be/O22L4oc-ICA
False Cape State Park: https://youtu.be/RsnTZX796yQ

I will round it off with some of my favorite personal observations:
Leatherback: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/62242061
American Crocodile: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/66333396
Timber Rattlesnake: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/54958873
Oceanic Manta: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/56138673
Barking Treefrog: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/73582487
Many-lined Salamander: https://www.inaturalist.org/observations/103221801

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