Hi Darren, I live in Ottawa. I recently went to Mud Lake in the Brittania area and I found some turtles and snakes. I'm sure there are many other places to visit. I'd recommend Little Ray's as well. And of course there's the Gatineau, you can usually find some cool stuff there. As for herp stores, I can't think of a really good one. I used to buy my feeder insects at Super Pet in Emerald Plaza (on Merivale) cuz they have a wide variety of feeders, but then I switched to buying them online for price reasons. They have a nice selection of herps compared to many Ottawa stores, but the selection is still pretty small. I'd like to someday open a store in Ottawa like Port Credit Pets in Mississauga
Anyway, good luck with your new job and I hope you enjoy your stay in Ottawa!