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New Amphibian Identification Guide - now available PDF Print

Amphibian ID guide 2014 - for websiteWe are pleased to announce that the ARG UK/ARC Amphibian Identification guide has been newly updated for 2014.  The guide has been expanded with funding from Natural England's support for ARG UK's educational work, and it is available to all ARGs as a free resource - for example to support training events, to assist in responding to identification queries and even to print out and stick up on display boards. 

The full document can be downloaded here: Amphibian ID guide 2014 (updated) or from ARC's website (http://www.arc-trust.org)

Please report all your sightings to an appropriate recorder, such as your local ARG or the Record Pool (http://www.recordpool.org.uk), so that the observations can feed into conserving our native herpetofauna.

Make the Adder Count in 2014 PDF Print

Vb group males H9 newWelcome to Make the Adder Count 2014. Started in 2005, this long-running survey aims to encourage springtime counts of adders, with the objectives of informing local conservation projects/interests and gathering a long-term surveillance dataset. 

Make the Adder Count encourages experienced observers to gather data in a standardised way (by making at least three and, ideally, five or six, counts of snakes) so that information may be pooled to build a picture of trends in adder populations nationally.

In 2014 the project will  be co-ordinated by the Chair of ARGUK, Chris Monk, who has taken over from John Baker after 8 years of sterling service. To take part please contact him at:  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 To Take Part in Make the Adder Count

You can download the MTAC forms for 2014 here:

 Make the Adder Count recording form 2014

Survey notes and additional information can be downloaded from here

Make the Adder Count notes 2014


MTAC has been generously supported by:

NE logodarg logoherpetologic-logoARGUKARC logo


ToadSize 2014 - Getting the measure of toads and traffic PDF Print

OxARg toad measuring 2 A Julian

In 2013, Amphibian and Reptile Conservation and ARGUK launched a new project - ToadSize - that aims to investigate the impact of road mortality on toad populations, and how that is affected by toad patrolling. This is achieved by measuring male toads on their way to their breeding ponds.

In the 2013 season, we were delighted to receive over 750 records from 19 crossing sites, with some rather unexpected results, which showed that at the sites tested the most important factors were frequency of partol and distance form breeding pond. For more on this please download our powerpoint Toadsize 2013 results

We would also like to thank everybody who took part.

In the 2014 breeding season, we would like to repeat the ToadSize project, to gather additional information from both existing and new sites, and to test our preliminary findings. This will inform future conservation efforts. Therefore, once again, ARGUK and ARC would like help from the local ARGs and toad patrollers.

What we would like you to do

  • Measure the body lengths of 10 to 20 male toads per night, for several nights during a crossing period.
  • Count or estimate the number of toads moved by patrollers on each sample night.
  • Count or estimate the number of toads killed by traffic on each sample night.
  • Measure traffic volume at the crossing.

Site selection

We want measurements from sites where road mortality is known to be high. But we also need to compare these with sites where there is low mortality (e.g. quiet roads or roads temporarily closed to traffic), or no mortality. All types of site are welcomed, and if you or your ARG can organise data collection from one of each, then it would be a valuable addition to the project.

How to get involved

To get involved with ToadSize 2014, please download the recording forms:

ToadSize 2014 recording form in excel

ToadSize 2014 methods and recording form (.pdf)

If you can contribute to this citizen-science project to investigate the impacts of road traffic on common toads, then please contact Angie Julian (ARGUK Secretary)
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or John Wilkinson (ARC Science Programme Manager) This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Health and Safety

The safety of volunteers is of paramount importance, and so participants in ToadSize should adhere to the safety measures recommended for all toad patrolling work.