AUGUSTA, Ga (WJBF) – Two Augusta teens are making headlines by doing something kids used to do all the time: going outside.
The boys spend most of their free time doing what they call “herping” and are getting noticed on TikTok for it.
So what is herping? It’s short for herpetology.
“It’s the process and studies of reptiles and amphibians. You just go out and look for them,” Holland said.
Holland and Smith have been friends since middle school. Now, they are seniors at Lucy Laney High School, and they said they have been herping together for a long time.
“He actually got me started doing it,” Holland said.
“I got Tim started. I’ve been doing it since I moved down here. And then Tim told me he was interested in animals. I was like, ‘Oh, you should come over sometime,'” Smith said. “And probably one day, and then the one day started to us coming way more.”
“Yeah, it was like we was coming out here every day,” Holland said.
The friends go out to a waterway – usually the canal – and just start looking for animals. When they find them, they try to catch them. If they do, they make a video of the animal and explain what it is.
They said their interest in these creatures might become a career. When asked if they were planning to go to college and study biology Smith answered, “Yeah, I’m going to college. Herpetologist, biologist, zoologist,” as Holland nodded.
They explained that their families are supportive of what they are doing, but their friends aren’t sure what to think about their favorite hobby.
“They say… they think we’re crazy to be honest,” Holland said. “They think we’re crazy. But, it be all love to be honest.”
They have some advice for their younger followers who might be interesting in herping, too.
“Stay safe, for one,” Holland said. “Don’t pick up nothing, especially if you don’t know it. I wouldn’t recommend them to come out here unless they [are] with a parent. And start in your backyard.”