Shawn Heflick holding a large Indian cobra
|Occupation||Adventurer, Biologist and TV Host|
Life and career
Heflick was born in Akron, Ohio. He grew up on a farm outside of Marion, Ohio living the life most farm boys did, which was running the woods and fields with his dogs. At age 7, he knew he wanted to be a biologist and to work with animals. He attended Pleasant High School, after moving into a more residential farming community. He graduated in 1987. Wanting to go to college to earn his biology degree, but not having the money for it, Heflick joined military service and volunteered to go to Central America. He was not disappointed with what he found and his love for exotic exploration and adventure was born. He enrolled in Wright State University to gain a degree in biology and met his future wife, Jennifer, the first week he was there. During these college years, he worked multiple jobs to make it through. Heflick worked at a vet clinic, a physiology lab and was security at a bar to name a few. He graduated in 1994 and married Jennifer before moving down to Melbourne, Florida to enter graduate school at the Florida Institute of Technology.
Heflick had always been mesmerized by the ocean since gaining his SCUBA certification when he was 16, so attending a graduate school close to the ocean was no accident. Part of the way through graduate school, Shawn and Jennifer had their son Thorne Ginga Heflick . Heflick left graduate school and took a job at Brevard Zoo as curator, where he excelled at his duties and both taught, as well as, learned from his keepers in the husbandry and care of exotic animals until 1998. Heflick left the zoo to once again pursue his graduate degree, which he earned in 2001. Since receiving it, he has worked as a teacher, director of conservation, field biologist, director of education and president for several not-for-profit conservation NGOs.
Heflick is currently the host for National Geographic Wild's Python Hunters and has appeared on or in National Geographic, PBS Nature, Smithsonian Channel, Travel Channel, Time Magazine, Time Magazine for Kids, Dateline, Nightline, BBC, CNN, ABC, CBS, NBC, as well as, countless newspapers across the US and abroad. Heflick also runs several small businesses including Wildland Tours, Art By Evolution, White Gator Productions and Shawn Heflick Enterprises. Occasionally Heflick also contributes commentary as an animal expert on various local and national news programs.
Heflick and his family live in Florida and have a home in the Amazon Basin of Peru where they love to vacation and get back into the wild.
- The Python Hunters
- Herpetologist Shawn Heflick Answers Your Questions