Reptile Surveys in East Anglia
In East Anglia there are 4 species of native reptile:
- Grass snake
- Slow worm
- Viviparous lizard
All four species are relatively widespread in the region and are given limited legal protection under part of Section 9 (1) and all of Section 9(5) of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 (as amended). This means that it is an offence to intentionally kill, injure and offer for sale.
Where sites have potential for reptiles to occur, it is essential that adequate surveys are undertaken to demonstrate presence/absence. Where reptiles are present, it is essential to determine approximate population distribution and levels.
Reptile surveys are undertaken through a combination of direct observation and the use of artificial refuges, which reptiles use for basking at certain times of the day (making them easier to locate). Philip Parker Associates have undertaken surveys for all four reptile species on a number of sites, comprising of a variety of habitat types.
Out of the county, surveys can also be undertaken for smooth snake and sand lizard, as survey licences are held for both of these species. Both species benefit from an increased level of protection under European Legislation.
When reptiles are likely to be affected by a proposed development, it is necessary to devise an appropriate mitigation scheme. Philip Parker Associate have successfully carried out mitigation schemes on a number of sites, including the following:
- Identification of suitable receptor habitat and establishment of new habitat where required;
- Capture and translocation;
- Monitoring of translocation and habitat enhancement success;
Norfolk Amphibian And Reptile Database
Philip Parker is the recorder for the Norfolk Amphibian and Reptile Group and maintains the database and distribution map for all species in the county. Records are co-ordinated with the Norfolk Biological Information Service.
Data searches are available for interested groups and consultants (a small fee may be payable to NARG group funds). Please contact us on 01553 630842 for more details.