Years ago, herping often involved collection of herps from the wild for keeping in captivity. Thankfully, the hobby has evolved from this time and collection is no longer a focus of the majority of field herpers. The Friends of the Cache, and most field herpers for that matter, do not endorse collection of wild herps. Raising, and potentially breeding, herps in captivity is referred to as "herptoculture" and is best done with captive bred animals. In Illinois, field collecting herps requires a current Illinois Fishing License and herptoculture requires an Illinois Aquaculture License. For the laws regarding those activities, click here.
Herping the Cache Watershed
With its high biodiversity of reptiles and amphibians, the Cache River Watershed is a Mecca for herpers throughout the U.S. and Canada. More than 30 amphibian and 40 reptile species have been recorded in the Cache basin. For information on the natural history and ranges of Illinois herps, we recommend checking out the Illinois Natural History Survey website. Accounts of all the species known to occur in the state are available.