Amphibians and Reptiles Survey

Amphibians and Reptiles Survey

Populations of our once common amphibian species are in decline in the UK, mostly due to habitat loss and fragmentation, pollution, diseases and climate change.

Adders specifically are also victims of poor understanding and misconception from the public, often leading to populations being at high risk of extinction in many parts of the UK. Widespread amphibian and reptile species, such as the common toad, are suffering declines locally and nationally.

This monitoring programme will help us understand the current situation of the populations in the Chess Valley. This is key to planning and prioritising the actions needed to protect their long-term future.


The Smarter Water Catchment team has started a new monitoring programme for amphibians and reptiles in the Chess Valley.

Training and necessary equipment will be provided to those citizen scientists who join the monitoring and decide to survey in the Chess Valley.

Surveys will run from March to October and will mostly consist of checking artificial refugia (in the form of undulines, carpet tiles, profile tins, and felts) strategically located on sites with suitable habitat. We suggest that volunteers carry out at least 6 visits in the right weather conditions: 4 between March and June, and 2 visits from mid-August to October.

Great Crested Newt (GCN) surveys with a licenced surveyour will also be offered if citizen scientists are interested (whether as a one off experience, or to pursue a Natural England GCN Survey or Research level 1 licence).

All records collected by citizen scientists will feed into national monitoring schemes and will contribute to the protection of amphibians and reptiles locally and nationally.

Chilterns ANOB
Chilterns ANOB

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