London Amphibian and Reptile Group is actively involved in the conservation of all native species of amphibian and reptile and their habitats in London. We aim to establish and monitor the distribution and status of amphibians and reptiles in the area, to foster an interest in amphibians and reptiles and their conservation and to develop the skills of those interested in these species.
Help Us Out!
We would like to encourage everyone who has an interest in native UK Reptiles and Amphibians to join us and become involved with conservation in the capital. We specialise in working with local volunteer groups and have a particular keen interest in sourcing new sites to survey and monitor if possible - so please mention us to any landowners who may have habitats they would be willing to offer for volunteer surveying* and help provide sites for future practice and training.
We also need people to simply spread the word that we exist! A strong part of the LARG future is to become a key contact in supporting volunteers from all backgrounds in getting involved with local conservation projects, perhaps even provide opportunities to lead projects - and evolve London's awareness of it's current Amphibian and Reptile status.
*Important - In being volunteer based, the insurance and nature of our surveys are not suitable for commercial level surveys. If you require Consultancy level surveys, try CIEEM - Professional Directory.
This year, London Amphibian and Reptile Group have been working with the Friends of Hampton Heath in the borough of Richmond-Upon-Thames to carry out monitoring of amphibian and reptile populations.
We surveyed two ponds on the neighbouring driving range and golf course, recording over 40 smooth newts in one night, and capturing a spangled diving beetle, a red-listed species and a first record for the borough.
We have also helped to initiate a long-term project to monitor and better understand the common lizard population at the heath. It was feared following a series of fires last year that the once infrequently sighted lizards may not have survived, however so far via the joint monitoring effort in 2023, common lizards have been regularly recorded across all areas of the heath, indicating the presence of a healthy and resilient metapopulation.
With thanks to Art Gelling and the Friends of Hampton Heath, keep up the good work!
A small, dedicated group of local residents continue to work tirelessly to rescue huge numbers of trapped toads and smooth newts at Chiswick Business Park. During the spring migration, toads and newts face an obstacle course of drains and underground car parks on their way to their breeding pond in the centre of the site, however following the main breeding season, many animals (including the occasional stag beetle!) continue to become entrapped in the numerous drains around the site.
This year to date, over 100 toads and 450 newts have been rescued. London ARG has supported the volunteers with a donation of equipment (buckets and nets), helped to measure gully pots and engaged with the business park management to gain approval for the installation of amphibian gully-pot ladders later this year.
Special thanks to Sivi and Claire, and to Chiswick Business Park for their co-operation. If you would like to help out the volunteers at Chiswick Business Park, please contact us.
London Amphibian and Reptile Group have been working with the Friends of Grove Farm Local Nature Reserve in the London Borough of Ealing to monitor slow worm populations at the 8 hectare site, which is situated just opposite Sudbury Hill underground station.
We helped to provide and place artificial refugia around the site, and slow worms are now frequently encountered during surveys, and we are beginning to gain an insight into the size and distribution of the population. London ARG has also been providing habitat management advice for the group, and will be helping to create a new pond on site later this year.
Special thanks to Mike, Anna and the Friends of Grove Farm Local Nature Reserve.
The team at Kew Gardens were kind enough to host us this spring. We carried out bottle trapping at four different ponds, in the hope of rediscovering a great population which was introduced in the year 2000 and last recorded over 10 years ago.
Although we were not fortunate enough to find any great crested newts this year, we remain hopeful in the outcome of further surveys in 2024, and we were blessed with a fantastic turnout from the smooth newts and common toads.
Many thanks to Ruth, Aneel, Louie and the rest of the team at Kew.
Trinity High School Wildlife Area and Pond Workdays with Sivi Sivanesan ...contact Redbridge Nature Ranger (Julia) 020 8559 2316 / 07949 053 688
Contact LARG for more details
~ Where, the Why & How~
ARC’s Reserve Manager Gary Powell will be giving a Herpetofauna habitat management training on Friday 21st October at Colne Valley Regional Park Visitor Centre (near Uxbridge) for those who are interested in learning more about management techniques to benefit herpetofauna and how to implement them.
The day will consist of a power point presentation (ooo!) and informal discussion of your queries followed by lunch (yum!). During the afternoon we will be going out on site visits to TWO London Wildlife Trust Reserves –
+ Denham Lock Wood SSSI (Wet Woodland) and
+ Frays Farm Meadows (Grassland)
Of which both hold good populations of reptiles and amphibians to discuss on-site management (and surveying techniques) for herps between these two very different habitats.
Both reserves are less that 15 minutes walking distance from the Visitor Centre.
[10am-11am]: Introductions and power point presentation
[11am]: Coffee/tea break
[11:15-12:00pm]: Informal discussions on habitat management issues
[12-1pm]: Lunch (time to show off your sandwiches)
[1-3pm]: Reserve visits and management discussion in context to reserves, grazing, connectivity and herps
[4pm]: Finish time (no later than)
~ A BIT MORE BACKGROUND~
This training opportunity is free and would most benefit those who actively work on sites with herpetofauna and carry out habitat management practices.
If you are interested, please let CLARE Officer Sophie (email@example.com) know as soon as poss! As spaces are LIMITED!
Further info regarding the site and the day's events to be reconfirmed nearer the time.
SO BOOK NOW!
Contact LARG for more details
Do you live in London or Great London? Would you like to find out more about your local amphibians and reptiles? Would you like to get involved in local conservation? Then please join us on Thursday 28th January at 7:30 pm on Zoom, and you can meet some of your local amphibian and reptile groups, hear about the different projects they are involved with, and find out how you too can help!
Please note this is a free online event powered by Zoom. Please sign up on Eventbrite and we can send you a Zoom link before the event.
Membership: Is currently free, please register your interest through joining our London ARG facebook page! Or send a quick e-mail message to John Salisbury - firstname.lastname@example.org
Enquiries (regarding group involvement): Please contact John Salisbury - email@example.com
Enquiries (for general Amphibian/Reptile help): Please write to - firstname.lastname@example.org
Upcoming events will be listed here.