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Dr. Peter May

Photographer & herpetologist

Professor of Biology at Florida's Stetson University, Dr. Peter May teaches several vertebrate-related and general biology courses. For more than ten years, he has conducted field research on rattlesnake and turtle ecology, and varied research on other ecological topics.

He has been published in more scientific journals than we have room to name, contributed chapters on snakes and turtles to books and made numerous presentations at scientific meetings. His writings have appeared in popular press publications. You may have seen him recently on television - the National Geographic Channel - when he appeared on Brady Barr's Reptile Wild - Episode "Snake People".

Dr. Peter May - looking every inch the eminent scholar that he is.
Dr. Peter May - looking every inch the eminent scholar that he is.


Peter, who is married with two boys, ages 8 and 14, has been involved in nature photography since he was 18. Although he has been conducting snake research for the past ten years, his most frequently photographed subjects are birds, followed more or less by macro subjects (insects primarily), reptiles and amphibians (which herpetologists often refer to simply as "herps"), flowers, landscape and habitats.


He takes his photographs with 35mm N70 Nikon cameras fitted with the following lenses: a 200mm Nikkor Micro, a 400 mm 5.6 Sigma APO, and a 24-120 zoom Nikon. He uses Bogen tripods and heads. His film preferences are Fuji Provia F for birds and Fuji Velvia for macrophotography and landscapes.


Rarely involved in the photography of people, including infrequently posing for pictures, Peter was unable to send us a current photograph of himself. Just didn't have one. The shot above of him with a butterfly net was taken some years ago, but we suspect he doesn't look a lot different today. The picture below, which is more representative of his photography interests, shows the colorful and highly-venomous eastern coral snake.

Eastern coral snake photographed by Dr. Peter May.
Eastern coral snake photographed by Dr. Peter May.


You can see more of Peter May's snake photographs on his website at Snakes of Lake Woodruff National Wildlife Refuge. Don't forget to take the Florida Snake Quiz when you visit. It is interesting and fun, and you can check out your knowledge of snakes.