Robert Hughes tells facilitator Tricia Runzel about his nineteen pet snakes.

Robert Hughes and CuddlesTR: So what’s your favorite memory with the snakes?

RH: Seeing people’s reactions and being able to engage people about reptiles. As humans we seem to have this innate fear of reptiles. That fear to a certain degree is taught. [For] my granddaughter that I mentioned earlier, to have reptiles [or to] have a lot of animals around, that’s all she’s ever known and she’s not afraid. Where I’ve encountered small children here today that took a little coaxing. And it’s good to see people overcome that fear because not only do they make wonderful pets, they’re vital to the ecosystem. They keep the rodent populations down. So they do provide, even out here in the wild, they provide a very important service in the biological scheme of things.

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