FARG was first set up in 2011. We seek to promote reptile and amphibian conservation throughout the Fylde and aim to improve the knowledge of the distribution of our native Herpetofauna, educate the public and increase the awareness of the challenges faced by this group of animals.
FARG is committed to achieving these aims through surveys and undertaking practical conservation projects, working closely with the North Blackpool Pond Trail (NBPT) and Blackpool Environmental Team's (BEAT) Naturewatch group as well as our neighbouring ARGs.
We observe, record and enjoy the Amphibians and Reptiles of the Fylde area of western Lancashire, from Preston northwards to Glasson Dock just south of Lancaster, westwards towards Pilling and along the coast to Fleetwood, Blackpool, Lytham St Anne's and Freckleton.
The area is notable for its large number of farm ponds, Lancashire's largest natural lake, Marton Mere, two of Lancashire's main rivers as well as remnant coastal dune systems and a small area of original mossland. If you would like to join the group and participate in activities then please get in touch via the Contact Us page.
We need your help to record the Fylde's amphibians and reptiles, for example from your garden pond or local area. Did you know we have more records of the rare and endangered Great Crested Newt than we do of Frogs and Toads - go to the Contact Us page for details.
Last night two FARG members went to the outskirts of Blackpool to survey a selection of ponds there.
The first is small and quite overgrown, not that we like this term – better would be at a later successional stage – it has dense stands of Typha (Reedmace) with little open water and a deep layer of sunken litter.
Four female Smooth Newts were recorded along with two males and two unsexed tails disappearing in to the submerged leaf litter, making eight animals in all.
We also found a single female Great Crested Newt, the photo shows the warty skin nicely hence their alternative name, the Warty Newt.
Also seen well are the bright yellow toe nails and if you look hard a small length of the yellow band along thee underside of the tail.
A look at Lawson's Road Wetland
Posted on Tuesday 7th June, 2011
Not too many years ago the BEAT Naturewatch group secured the funding to transform a redundant badly drained former sports field into a fantastic wetland area full of potential.
Two FARG members undertook a two hour torch survey of four of the ponds last night that wasn't quite as productive as hoped.
A single Frog was found in the first pond which was notably lifeless.However we could hear frogs calling in theother ponds without actually seeing them. We knew they had been there due to the huge amounts of spawn in each. One clump had suffered a little frost damage showing white rather than black eggs in the spawn sitting above water level.
The last pond looked at had a healthy population of Smooth Newts with 12+ counted and one female wrangled - gently - just to check that it definitely wasn't a Palmate Newt, very unlikely but you never know. The speckly chin gives the game away as a Smooth Newt.