Things you might not know about me:
1. My biggest hobby these days is wildlife photography. I try to take several trips every year mainly to photograph wildlife where they live. You can view my images at www.stevebarten.com. I also post some of my images on our Interesting Stuff page on this website. Some of my favorite images are of mountain gorillas, snowy owls, and jaguars.
2. I love all animals but always have been fascinated by reptiles. As a result I treat many reptile patients and often give continuing education lectures on reptile medicine at veterinary conferences and veterinary schools, both locally, nationally, and internationally. I like to see them in the wild and go on "snake hunting" trips every year, but it's just to see them like birdwatching, not to do anything with them.
3. I'm senior author for three chapters in the new third edition of Mader's Reptile Medicine and Surgery textbook, which was published in 2019.
4. I've been involved with the North American Veterinary Conference (renamed Veterinary Meeting and Expo, or VMX, in 2017) for over 25 years, serving first as Reptile Program Chair for 4 years, then Exotics Program Coordinator for 8 years, and finally Program Coordinator for the whole conference for 5 years. It's the largest veterinary conference in the world, with over 17,000 attending, 400 speakers, 1200 continuing education lectures, and dozens of hands-on-workshops. I am a speaker-of-the-year award recipient.
5. I was a scuba diver for many years with over 300 logged dives. My most exciting animal experiences were cage diving with great white sharks at Isle Guadalupe, Mexico, and scuba diving in the Cooper River in South Carolina for fossil shark teeth (I found a 5-incher!) and bumping into an 8-foot-long alligator in the murky, low visibility water.
6. I've been married to my wife, Patty, a retired corporate executive, for 44 years. We have two grown sons. One lives in LA with his wife and 2 daughters and works for Netflix. The other is a biomedical engineer who lives in San Jose with his wife.