by Owen Maercks on Mar 1, 2014
“  One of the things I have noticed in the big chain/box store pet departments that makes me wonder—and smile—is the stunning lack of proper caging and supplies for the animals they choose to market. It is one of those shortcomings that independent retailers like me can use to maintain a foothold in the increasingly competitive marketplace. After all, it is not only difficult for the giants to find a reliable supplier of caging for…”

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by Owen Maercks on Feb 1, 2014
“        When I was 12 years old, an older cousin gave me a bona-fide classic. Living Amphibians of the World was a coffee table book, lavishly illustrated and well written. It introduced me to the entire Living series, but it remains my favorite to this day. I…”
by Owen Maercks on Jan 1, 2014
“    It will come as no surprise that many of my employees have particular obsessions within the herpetological universe. For instance, one of my managers is focused—to an almost unhealthy degree—on water snakes of the genus Nerodia, a thick-bodied, ill-tempered, and typically dully colored and patterned group that also…”
by Owen Maercks on Dec 1, 2013
“  The other day I was training a new employee and asked him: “I own this store, and yet, week in and week out, I spend a large portion of every day stocking our shelves with dry goods. It’s one of the most boring jobs in the store. Why do…”
by Owen Maercks on Nov 1, 2013
“    As I write this column, the death of two young Canadian boys, allegedly killed by a python, remains under investigation. As of yet, there do not seem to be any conclusive findings. The prevailing theory is that the boys were killed by the snake foundin the room where…”