The aim of this group is to understand and protect the amphibians and reptiles of the Wirral peninsular through organizing training, raising awareness, surveys, habitat management tasks and other conservation activities.
The Wirral Peninsular has historically been habitat of Sand Lizard, Natterjack, Great Crested Newt, Common Frog, Common Toad, Smooth Newt, Palmate Newt, Common Lizard, Slow Worm and Grass Snake. However, developments in the 20th Century has seen species such as the Sand Lizard and Natterjack disappear. Status of other herps have been uncertain, the problem being linked to lack of surveys and recording.
In 2018, preliminary surveys around Wallasey revealed many new and surprising records for amphibians and reptiles. This was part of the Cheshire & Wirral ARG. However, the size of this district with that county was too large, necessitating the formation of a new ARG for Wirral (WiARG) so more surveys and recording can be coordinated across this interesting peninsular.
Founding member and current Chair of WiARG, Tom Doherty-Bone, grew up on the Wirral and was frustrated by the lost herpetofauna species and limited opportunities to view the remaining herps in the area. Formation of this new ARG will create the opportunity for local residents in the Wirral to get involved with amphibian and reptile surveys and recording for both enjoyment of these wonderful animals and to aid in their conservation on the Wirral.
Since its formation in 2019, WiARG has undertaken numerous surveys and practical conservation tasks across the Wirral. Some of the highlights have been mapping out the extent of Common Lizard in Harrison Park, Wallasey, as well as lizards and amphibians across the North Wirral Coastal Park. Updating the known status of amphibians (including Great Crested Newt) at Royden Park and more recently measuring the use of the tidal zone of amphibians in the north west Wirral coast.
An outline itinerary for 2022-23 can be found under the 'Upcoming surveys' tab, suggestions from members are welcomed.
Existing partnerships include the Wirral Ranger Service, Cheshire Wildlife Trust, the Friends of the North Wirral Coastal Park and Wirral Wildlife.
The present committee consists of: Thomas Doherty-Bone (chair); Sue Noyce (secretary); Jon Bielby (vice chair); Frankie Bielby (treasurer); Charles Mulryan (general committee); Mike Brown (senior adviser).
The membership fee for 2022-23 is £5, which goes toward conservation activities of the group, such as buying equipment. Payment can either be made in cash or paid through Paypal: https://paypal.me/WiARG?locale.x=en_GB
Membership cycle runs from April to April.
Please get in contact if you wish to get involved.
We will be running a stall by the ponds at Central Park Wallasey during the Jubilee weekend. The stall will be raising awareness of the amphibians & reptiles across Wirral, with special focus on pondlife in the park. We will have some newts, tadpoles (if any about), as well as numerous invertebrates.
This will be in collaboration with RECORD the local biological record centre, who will be introducing park visitors to biological recording via bug hunts, bird spotting and more.
We will be setting up the stall about 08:30 a.m. so if you want to come and volunteer, let us know. Hope to see you then, whether you are helping out or just saying hello and seeing what we can show you. The stall will be up from 9 a.m. till 3 p.m.
Minutes for Wirral ARG AGM Date 25/05/2021
Venue: On Zoom
Committee: Thomas Doherty-Bone (chair), Jon Bielby (secretary), Frances Bielby (treasurer), Mike Brown (mentor)
Other attendees: Sue Noyce, Charles Mulryan
TDB gave a presentation on the progress and achievement of the Wirral ARG (WiARG) since its launch in March 2019, with plans for 2021-22 laid out. So far there are 18 members. The accounts were presented. The meeting was then opened to the rest of the attendees.
Report spawn sightings to:
Subscriptions of £5 for April 2022-March 23 can be paid before April either via PayPal https://paypal.me/WiARG?locale.x=en_GB or in person at a meet
Wirral ARG survey/task list 2022
Upcoming events will be listed here.