First froglet of 2009!

Here is the first of a new generation of Common Frogs (Rana temporaria), the size of the tail has gradually decreased during the last few days and as each day goes on it spends more time sat on the rocks than in the water and will soon be ready for release.

froglet with tail

By Matt Wilson

Viviparous Lizards from April

Unfortunately the last month I have been very busy with exams so I have not been able to visit some of my local sites for amphibians and reptiles. But in early April I visited a local area of exposed moorland which is home to a population of Viviparous Lizards (Zootoca vivipara). As the site is so exposed, you really need a calm and clear day to be able to find them basking in the heather. On this particular afternoon there was no wind at all and not a cloud in the sky, therefore I was able to find a couple of basking males in about an hour of searching. One of which after alot of patience I was able to approach face to face with my macro lens. The only other species I have found at this site are Common Frogs (Rana temporaria) which seem to breed in the temporary rain pools that form on the moorland. Hopefully after my finals I will be able to do some more visits and find some females, here are some macro shots from that afternoon:

Zootoca vivipara2

And the habitat:

Zootoca habitat

An amplexus pair of Common Frogs (Rana temporaria) also found out on the moors:

Rana temporaria amplexus

By Matt Wilson

Rana temporaria tadpole development

For the first time in a couple of years I collected some eggs of the Common Frog (Rana temporaria) in my local area in order to release them back to the pond as fully developped frogs. Although a common species in my local areas as throughout the UK I still try to do my part for amphibian conservation even at home :-). They seem to be progressing well, and already some have developped back legs in a relatively short amount of time, as you can see from the following photo.

At 6 weeks:

tad legs

At 3 weeks, feeding on fish food:

rana tads

At 1 week:

1 week

After first collected:

eggs

By Matt Wilson