Hertfordshire Amphibian and Reptile Group (HertsARG)

About Us

Hertfordshire Amphibian and Reptile Group (HertsARG) is a new organisation established to involve the public in the conservation and recording of reptiles and amphibians. We are developing links with other local conservation groups in order to complete projects and develop records for the County. It is anticipated that we will affiliate to ARG UK and work closely with the County recorder to develop these aims.

Over the coming months we hope there will be news of a number of interesting and valuable conservation and research projects. Should you wish to become involved, or simply to be kept updated of progress, please email your contact details to davewillisbhs@yahoo.co.uk.

If you have any questions or ideas for future work, or know of a site you think may be of interest, let us know!




Latest speaker to come to HertsARG

Written on Sunday 22nd November, 2015

Rob Ward, from Kent University, joined us this week to tell us about his work with the Grass Snakes of Jersey. It was interesting to hear about the amount of survey effort that has gone into collecting his data, invloving many volunteers from the island. Of particular interest was his account of the radio tracking of snakes, which showed just how far some individual animals could travel in a relatively short space of time.

Grass Snakes are Hertfordshire's only snake species, and are totally harmless. They will be a target species for the distribution data being collated, and Rob has offered his help and advice in surveying these and other reptile species over the coming years.



Atlas progress 2015

Written on Tuesday 1st September, 2015
Under the direction of the Atlas team, headed up by Dr Chantal Helm and Ian Flack of the University of Hertfordshire, we have been busily putting out refugia and checking ponds throughout the survey season. This has yielded dozens of results for amphibians and reptiles and added substantially to our knowledge of the distribution of these species. Please get in touch if you want to get more involved.

Hertfordshire Wildlife Atlas

Written on Tuesday 24th March, 2015

2015 sees the start of a county wide survey effort, co-ordinated by Hertfordshire Natural History Society (HNHS), the University of Hertfordshire (UH), the Biological Records Centre(BRC)/Herts and Middlesex Wildlife Trust (HMWT) to update the excellent Atlas of the the county's Mammals, Reptiles and Amphibians, published in 2000. Further details can be found here: http://www.hnhs.org/view_news.php?id=102

This is being organised on a Tetrad basis, with people being allocated 2x2km squares across the county, with people being asked to submit data to the BRC. We have already co-ordinated one training day for willing volunteers, which took place in early February, with more planned (see events). If you wish to have further training in reptile and amphibian (herpetological) field techniques, or Mammal ID skills as well as a generally interesting day with like minded people, please come along and get started on your surveying!

The survey will take place over 5 years, and you don't have to restrict yourself to your tetrad when submitting data! Please get involved!


2015:Busy year!

Written on Monday 12th January, 2015

2015 promises to be the busiest year so far for HertsARG. Activities are going to include;

  • GCN surveying courses
  • Reptile and Amphibian ID courses.
  • Frequent countywide visits in order to survey for presence of Herpetofauna.
  • HertsARG representation at conferences worldwide.
  • Proctical conservation and habitat restoration work.

Please get in touch if you are interested!

Unwanted Terrapins: Hertfordshire Turtle trapping

Written on Saturday 16th August, 2014

The problem caused by ready availability and the various "crazes" associated with pet turtles or terrapins, is well known. Animals are bought when small, often following bad advice from pet shops and aquatic centres, and grow to be large, demanding reptiles. Often, when that little creature (which was cute when the size of a 50p coins) is 10" long, eating loads, smelling badly and maybe even nipping fingers, people feel less inclined to keep them. And that is when they get dumped . . .

Recently, a local animal rescue contacted me on behalf of a local Council. They have asked that some terrapins, illegally dumped in a pond, be removed, for the welfare of the animals as well as the impact they may be having on the environment.

Therefore, HertsARG has now constructed (and is refining) a turtle trap, which is a humane method of catching basking turtles - a sort of floating basket- in order that they can be safely removed. Catching these animals is proving tricky, but the work is ongoing!

If you know of any illegally released terrapins please let us and we can try to help.

If you have turtles/terrapins (or any reptile/amphibian) which you are struggling to keep and are thinking of releasing PLEASE get in touch. You won't get into trouble but we have contacts and resources which we can use to help you out.07581121270

<< Start < Prev [1] 2 3 4 5 6 Next > End >>


No Entries

Photo Gallery

This section displays images of the work undertaken by HertsARG
Heartwood Forest
HertsARG and the MARA team are assisting the Woodland Trust at...

New Great Crested newt records
Here HertsARG members Ian and Charlotte are collecting in bottle...

Newts sharing refugia
This photo shows the difference between a Great Crested Newt and...

Herts ARG and BT
HertsARG helped BT engineers with removing some Grass Snakes from a...

Pond clearing at Bayfordbury
Removing choking vegetation to improve Great Crested Newt habitat.

Green Lizard
A non-native Green Lizard spotted in Dorset

Grass Snake
Grass Snake spotted on a trip to Dorset

<< Start < Prev [1] 2 3 Next > End >>

Record your Sightings

Contact Us

David Willis - Founder

(Please email for details, upcoming projects and any unwanted animals)


Telephone: 07581121270


Mammal Amphibian and Reptile Atlas (MARA) and Herp record queries;

Dr Chantal Helm or Mr Ian Flack

University of Hertfordshire






Upcoming Events

We'll announce our events here...

Latest News

Latest speaker to come to HertsARG: Rob Ward, from Kent University, joined us this week to tell us about his work with the Grass Snakes of Jersey. It was interesting to hear about the amount of survey effort that has gone into collecting his data, invloving many volunteers from the island. Of particular interest was his... read more >>