Cumbria ARG
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About us

About Us

Welcome to Cumbria Amphibian and Reptile Group! (CARG)

PLEASE READ OUR LATEST ADVICE CONCERNING THE COVID-19 VIRUS OUTBREAK

Dear all - with the pace of change of COVID-19 restrictions, rather than give out-dated advice we have updated our permanent web page with links to individual country advice - and included COVID-19 on our standard risk assessment.

COVID UPDATE

As a volunteer run group our aims are to promote the conservation of our native reptiles and amphibians here in Cumbria. Improving the knowledge of the distribution of our native species, educate and increase awareness via surveys and practical conservation.

We are looking for members that would be interested in getting involved in local conservation and receiving training, surveying, attending talks and sharing knowledge and experiences.

As a group, we offer -                                                                                              

We are available and qualified to give

  • ·School talks
  • ·Group presentations
  • ·Field trips

Training days carried out by expert ecologists

  • ·Identification skills
  • ·Species ecology
  • ·Methods of surveying
  • ·To help monitor our native amphibians and reptiles (non-licensed species only)

Social events

  • ·Walks and talks
  • ·Conferences
  • ·Presentations
  • ·Public events
  • ·Fundraising

Tailor made research expeditions in collaboration with Project Wild Gambia

The annual membership fee is £5  (free for under 16's and students).

To become a member send an email request to

cumbria.arg@gmail.com

Bank transfer details will be forwarded to you. 

You will receive a welcome email and login details to ARGWEB - in which the appropriate membership forms and voluntary forms will be required to be filled in for your membership.

As a member, you can be involved in -

Toad Patrols

Become a patrol manager of a registered road or a patroller to help to assist in helping our native common toad to their breeding ponds

Surveys

Contribute to the collection of data - building a picture of reptile and amphibian distribution within our county

Habitat Management

Practical ground management improving the quality of amphibian and reptile habitats

ARGWEB Management Software

Managing membership/ managing survey direction and reporting/sharing data info to land managers, owners, stakeholders

 
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News

News

Spring Update

Posted on Wednesday 7th April, 2021

Herp surveys are well on their way !!!!!

Toad Patrols News!

 A message from Matt our toad patrol coordinator 

Silverdale site: 22 different patrollers (between 2 and 7 out at a time) gave up a total of 32.25 hours of their time over 30 nights to help 329 frogs, 871 toads and 358 newts for a total of 1558 amphibians helped.

Stainton lane site: 3 different patrollers (between 1 and 2 out at a time) gave up a total of 35 hours of their time over 28 nights to help 16 frogs, 446 toads and 1 newt for a total of 463 amphibians helped.

if you've been out patrolling i'd love to hear your stats too

I've also managed to get out and visit 3 other sites this year including one that will hopefully be registered next year. and i've been told about a few more that will need checking out next year.

please remember to send your stats to Froglife and upload them to ARGweb (all sites have a section in the toad patrol area).

finally another reminder to fill out the freshwater habitats spawn survey if you see any spawn

so all that's left is for me to say a massive thank you to all of you for your hard work and dedication to helping our amphibian friends.

 

Cumbria Biodiversity Centre Conference 

A fantastic online conference bringing together numerous recording groups from across the county. We were involve in the conference giving updates on 2020 recording figures and events that had taken place and introduced a list of projects for the forth coming season.

Carlisle NATS talk 

A talk presented by Suzie Collinson on two current monitoring programmes - both looking at identifying individuals within Slow worm and Adder populations. A shorter version of the talk is available here NATS talk

ARG UK Seminars 

A brilliant range of seminars available from ARG UK click here for link to you tube channel including 

The role of reintroductions in rewilding

ARG uk Seminars

 

Adder Awareness

We have been able to help local reserves with Adder awareness on their sites with the handing out of informative posters Adder aware

Finding Sanctuary Project

Our Finding Sanctuary Project is up and running !!!!!

Volunteers exploring and surveying burial grounds and small green spaces local to them (fully supported)

For more information please head to the website tab Projects/Education 

Voluntary Survey Group

We now have a dedicated FB page for those members wishing to help with surveys 

CARG Survey group


Annual General Meeting Update 2021

Posted on Friday 12th March, 2021

If you would like to find out what we are all about and discover what we do as a group and see the exciting projects we have coming up for 2021 - click on the link to view our recorded meeting !

Annual General Meeting 2021

 

If you would like to view a presentation (slimmed down version) of the Carlisle Natural History Society Talk on Slow worms and Adder identification studies 

Presentation Carlisle NATS

 
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Education and Tutorials

Posted on Thursday 28th January, 2021

We have a fantastic selection of activities for school and home. All are available free of charge to download (On the Education and Tutorial page tab). Choose from  "Amazing Adders" and a selection of Amphibian related information and games !

This will be updated regularly with more fun activities and learning resources - so keep checking!

We would love to see the end product from these activities -so please share your creativity with us on our Facebook page ! Facebook page 

cumberland show 1

 

 
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New Year Update

Posted on Sunday 17th January, 2021

Herpy New Year !

Calender

So to start with a very big thank you to all of those that were involved in the CARG Calender competition

To Ashleigh (CARG outreach) for putting the project together ! 

To all the members for their entries, absolutely amazing images !

To  the ARG UK trustees for the very difficult job of choosing the winners !

and last but not least to those that purchased a calender  - the funds will be used for much needed survey equipment for the forthcoming season.

calender

There is still the opportunity to buy one of these fabulous calenders 

CARG online shop

 

ARG UK position on reintroductions

ARG UK POLICY STATEMENT CONCERNING REINTRODUCTIONS

ARG UK celebrates those who are passionate about conserving our native reptile & amphibian species. We support reintroductions as a last resort (following relevant legislation & guidance) to restore the former range of species still present or return of an extinct species to its historic native range, such as northern pool frogs.

For ARG UK's full detailed position statement concerning reintroductions, please visit: https://www.arguk.org/.../arg-uk-policy-statement...

A link to ARG UK's Advice Note 12 on Reintroductions is also available there (https://www.arguk.org/.../amphibian-and-reptile...) as well as a link to a talk from our Autumn Seminar Series on understanding and managing amphibian diseases (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jjlIRHmuIg&feature=youtu.be)

 

Spawn Surveys 

The Fresh water Habitats Trust have launched their annual spawn survey - If you have spotted spawn in your pond or while out exercising (please stay safe and stick to government guidelines) let them know! Go to http://bit.ly/SpawnSurvey2021

 

 

Amphibian and Reptile Conservation Natterjack Volunteers Required 

CALL FOR CUMBRIA NATTERJACK TOAD RECORDERS! 🐸

ARC coordinate the national monitoring scheme for natterjack toads across the UK. We are currently looking for volunteer recorders in Cumbria to join our team. Find out more: www.arc-trust.org/call-for-cumbria-natterjack-toad-recorders

 

 

TOAD PATROLS

Hi Everyone. I'm starting to get my head around toad patrols for this year. if you've never heard of toad patrols its basically supporting amphibians on their migration to their breeding ponds by helping them cross busy roads (i.e. stopping them from getting squashed!). the patrols are coordinated across the country by Frog Life (more info here: https://www.froglife.org/what-we-do/toads-on-roads) but each site/crossing is managed individually. the sites need to be registered with Frog Life and all volunteers taking part also need to be registered (for insurance). i have attached the pack produced by Frog Life that has all the info in as well as the volunteer form

I manage two sites, one in South Cumbria and the other just over the border in North Lancashire. managing the sites basically involves coordinating volunteers to make sure as much as possible there is someone out patrolling when the amphibians are moving.

There are a number of patrol sites around Cumbria (these can be found following the link above) but its also possible to get new sites registered. i am in the process of contacting West Cumbria Rivers Trust who manage a couple of sites as well as the managers of the other Cumbria sites. my aim is to have a network set up so we can support each other with advertising for volunteers and with letting each other know when the migration has started

If anyone is interested in finding out more about the patrols (how they work, what you need to do etc), would like to help with mine (yes please!) or has a site in mind that may need one i am more then happy for you to msg me or email me: mail@wildlifeoasis.co.uk

I will be posting more info on the Fb page  as and when i get it including letting you all know when the migration starts

Many Thanks Matt 

 

GAMBIA August 2021

We had our first zoom meeting with Project Wild Gambia finding out what they can offer us as a group herp wise in the amazing country of The Gambia !

Previous projects can be found via this link Amphibian and Reptile Research

More info can be found on the dedicated FB page https://www.facebook.com/groups/740700883063664 in which further zoom meetings will be advertised, there is also a recording of our first meeting if you wish to watch ! 

Below is an image I (Suzie) took while in The Gambia of a beautiful Green mamba ! 

P1050171 2 

 

 
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2021 CARG calendar

Posted on Monday 30th November, 2020

It’s finally here! What we have all been waiting for, the 2021 CARG calendar. I have attached some images of the finalised calendar to get an idea of what it will look like.

Again, a massive thank you to all that submitted photos and to ARG UK for judging the competition. It was a tough one!

There are varying sizes available to buy including A5 (£8), A4 (£10) and A3 (£15). Profits made from sales go directly to CARG to support us in education outreach and survey equipment. Just click the link below!

https://www.fluidic.co.uk/c/6083/cumbria-amphibian-reptile-group

Photos used in this calendar have been taken with non-disturbance photography. Any photos you may see showing handling have been taken during surveys for identifying purposes.

Slide2Slide2


Events

Events

Show Past Events

CARG Expedition

Sun 1st August, 2021

Happy New Year Everyone !

To start the New Year off we have a fantastic opportunity as a group to head further a field in August 2021 to the amazing country The Gambia. This expedition is through Project Wild Gambia and is to carry out herp related conservation work. 

To keep updated please join our dedicated Facebook page CARG Expedition where progression and relevant zoom meeting events for the trip will be posted.snake photo 

Relevant websites for more information

Project Wild Gambia

Smile for Life

Gunjur Project

 

 

 

ARGWEB Login

ARGWEB Login

 

 
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Toad Patrols/Disease

Toad Patrols/Disease

 

TOAD PATROLS

Toad patrols are for supporting amphibians and reptiles on their migration to their breeding ponds by helping them cross busy roads (by stopping them getting squashed!)

The patrols are supported by Froglife Toads on the roads but each site is managed individually and sites need to be registered with Froglife and all volunteers taking part need to be registered for insurance purposes 

Relevant documents are below and contact email address for Toad Coordinator Matt 

mail@wildlifeoasis.co.uk

pdfToad-Patrol-Pack-for-Managers.pdf

docTOADS-ON-ROADS-REGISTRATION-FORM_1.doc

pdfToad_patrol_Cumbria_sites_and_how_you_can_get_involved.pdf

odtPatroller_declaration_form.odt

 

 

 TP

BIOSECURITY 

Please find below important information for all outdoor workers or herp enthusiasts about biosecurity. 

An introduction to amphibian and reptiles biosecurity pdfBiosecurity_web_page.pdf

A disease guide for fieldworkers pdfAmphibian_Disease_Precautions_A_Guide_for_UK.pdf

A disease alert to protect wild amphibian and reptile species by reducing disease risk in captive amphibian and reptilespdfReducing_disease_risks.pdf

Disease profiles

pdfAmphibiocystidium.pdf

pdfChytridiomycosis.pdf

pdfRanavirus.pdf

pdfSnake_fungal_disease.pdf

pdfToad_fly_infestation.pdf

 

 

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Education/Projects

Education/Projects

"Finding Sanctuary" Project 

 

In many urban locations small green sites exist, this can include churchyards and burial grounds (allotments, golf courses, parks, commons and school grounds). These areas can represent some of the few remaining peaceful havens for wildlife and people in an increasingly busy world. Even in the countryside, much of our biodiversity has been lost to intensive agriculture and infrastructure development.

These locations may then also provide a welcome respite for many of our native creatures including birds, wildflowers, fungi and lichens, mammals and invertebrates. These areas are often overlooked and can be an important home for our native amphibians and reptiles, which are often residing in the damp corners that so often characterise old churchyards for example.

We often have reports of common frogs and toads, newts, slow-worms, common lizards, grass snakes, and in some exceptionally special places even our most vulnerable native snake, the adder.

However, many reports are anecdotal, and whilst many churchyards and subsequent green areas have a ‘wild area’, this is often simply left and little is done to map the wildlife using it, or to target habitat improvement for specific species.

This project aims to focus on our forgotten creatures, those that inhabit the forgotten areas.

Activities will be coordinated through our county-based network of volunteer amphibian and reptile groups (ARGs).

Cumbria ARG will work with its local diocese, and other faiths, and local communities to identify burial grounds and green spaces that may be of greatest importance to wildlife, based on their location, existing habitat or habitat connectivity, and the passion and interest of the local community

docxFinding_Sanctuary_Project_Pack.docx

CARG Survey group

An introduction to amphibians and reptiles on allotments pdfAllotments_leaflet.pdf

Some ID guides from ARC Trust and ARG UK:

Amphibian ID guide

Reptile ID guide

Church yard

 

 

Education Material for Schools and Parents

To record the species you see pdfRecord_Sheet.pdf      

Information posters 

A quick introduction to amphibian and reptiles for primary school children pdfPrimary_School_Amphibians_and_Reptiles_poster.pdf

Adders are Amazing Activities 

Practical activity pdf5_Food_chains_and_webs.pdf

Arts and crafts activity pdf7_Wind_snakes_activity.pdf

Practical activity pdf8_Adder_hunt_quiz_activity.pdf

Arts and crafts activity pdf9_Adder_stone_trails_activity.pdf

Arts and crafts activity pdf13_Adder_nightlights.pdf

Arts and crafts activity pdf15_Adder_amulets.pdf

Arts and crafts activity pdf17_Adder_bookmarks.pdf

Baking activity pdf18_Snake_snacks.pdf

English and literature activity pdf19_Adder_poetry_activity.pdf

Class work

Power point looking at differences between snakes and lizards (emphasis on Slow worms)    pptxReptile_school_talk_slow_worms.pptx

cumberland show 1school reptile talk

Frog and toads

Basic images showing frog metamorphosis pdfFrog_cycle.pdf

A frog mask template to decorate pdfFrog_mask_template.pdf

Detailed Information on Common frogs, Common toads and NatterjackspdfNative_frog_and_toad_posters.pdf

Mix and match game - matching the correct definitions to the correct speciespdfMix_and_Match_Game.pdf

A quick guide to spawn identification jpgSlide1.JPG

Toad patrol involvement for children and vulnerable people jpgToad_Patrols_for_Children_and_Vulnerable_people.JPG

Amphibian and Reptile Quiz

Identify the correct species by just their eyeball. A tricky but fun quiz! pdfEye_ID_quiz.pdf

Mix and match game - match the correct habitat to the correct species pdfHabitat_Mix_and_Match_.pdf

Note down the correct habitat or habitats for the species. Similar to the mix and match game but with pictures!pdfHabitat_Quiz.pdf

Reptile Activities

Arts and crafts activity pdfSnake_rock_poster_activity_.pdf

 

Video Tutorials 

How to record your sightings  How to record your sightings

Membership Membership tutorial

 
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Contact us

Contact Us

 

 

 
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...
01931 714 128
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Upcoming Events

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