Monthly Meeting: A Look at Michigan Snakes

February 25, 2014 @ 12:00 am – 1:30 am
People's Church
1758 10th Street North
Kalamazoo, MI 49009
Penny Briscoe

     February’s ASK meeting will feature Eric Tobin, a professional herpetologist, who will provide photographs and commentary on Michigan snakes and their role in the world of nature. Michigan snakes are fascinating and they need advocates to help protect them.

     Eric is owner and president of Tobin International LLC, a business consulting company. His formal education includes degrees in business and nonprofit and educational administration. His childhood in Schoolcraft was spent wandering the natural landscape where he developed a love for the wild critters many people ignore or dislike¾the reptiles and amphibians he often encountered in the fields, fens, woods, and streams. The result is a rare expertise that he has put to good use. His company has formed a subsidiary called Tobin Herpetological, which is dedicated to conservation efforts for reptiles and amphibians. Since 1998 he has been a member of the Michigan Society of Herpetologists, currently serving as president.

   Eric’s avocation has given him purpose as an adult to continue to tramp the landscape he so loves, by performing numerous reptile and amphibian surveys over a 20-year period for government and private organizations. That work has included the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Kalamazoo Conservation District, and the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs (including a reptile and amphibian inventory at Fort Custer Training Center covering over 7,500 acres). A major project to protect the Eastern Massasauga Rattlesnake involved surveying all state and public land on the west side of Michigan. Eric also consults on captive breeding programs to prevent taking animals from the wild and provides training and consulting for pet stores, breeders, distributors, and suppliers.