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Sunday, 5 April 2015

Nocturnal Naturalists

Some of us in Calderdale out rescuing Toads, Frogs and Newts form traffic have had the following counts so far.

The main movement of Toads started on Friday 3rd April, when it warmed up to about 10C as it went dark. More were moving to their breeding ponds on 4th. These are very near the same dates as last year 2014 when I had a big count on 1st April.

Dobroyd Lane, Todmorden totals to date:
4/4/15 - toads 150, frogs 40, Palmate Newts 32, reported by Portia.

Portsmouth Dam, Cornholme
4/4/15 - 36 toads, one killed , one male Smooth Newt. From Sam.

Lumbutts, Todmorden
3/4/15 - 67 toads with no casualties, 4/4/15 44 with 2 dead. From Gordon.

Boulderclough, Sowerby
3/4/15 - 122 toads but another 10 killed, one frog, and one Palmate Newt.
4/4/15 - 85 toads with 6 killed despite 6 people patrolling (shortage of torches), 2 Palmate Newts.
(Me, Kathy, Steve Cummings, plus three others.)
5/4/15 - 118 toads but 12 killed, 4 Palmate Newts alive and one squashed. (SB and KE).

They could be coming out at dusk for  maybe a week or more if it stays mild.
Helpers need bright clothing to avoid being hit themselves, gloves such as rubber gloves, torch, a tub or bucket.
The main period of movement is about an hour just after dark.
See my earlier post for sites in lower Calderdale.


Matt Wilson said...

Great work, shame I've been away while the main migrations were happening. Just to make you aware, for about 3-5 days during peak migration the toads are still moving around in large numbers by daytime. There were lots dead (probably between 15-20) on Thursday and Friday near Lumbetts but managed to save about 15 or so as I was passing through. But of course daytime is not practical for volunteers because of work etc.

Chris White said...

Hello, fellow Calderdale resident here! Just stumbled upon this blog - it's ace. Out of general interest, I found a great number of toads (50+) over the Easter break in Cunnery Woods, near Shibden.

Anyway, keep up the good work - I'll try and become a regular follower!