Jon Cranfield

South West Regional Meeting 10th December 2011

In Uncategorized on December 11, 2011 at 6:08 pm

Had a great time at the South West Regional meeting of the ARG UK. I gave a talk on Make the Adder Count and I also led a seminar on Raising the profile of reptiles in the South West.

It was very enjoyable to see how the ARGs are getting on with conserving their local amphibians and reptiles.

It was a nice mixture of talks with a hefty weighting towards reptiles which is a change as these meetings are mostly amphibian.

There was a talk on great crested newts in Devon along with testing reptile survey guidelines through two MSc research projects. The issue of disturbance was discussed alongside in relation to reptile conservation.

Apparently I came over as anti consultant in my views towards the standards of reptile mitigation in the south west. I have to say I thought I was leaning on the nature conservation bodies as they definitely do not have reptiles on their agenda. The delegates were under the impression that wildlife organisations should know what they are doing when it comes to conservation. This is continually not the case when reports of reptile sites being damaged by nature conservation activities such as clearing scrub, brambles and gorse to create ‘heathland’.

The attitude is the reptiles can look after themselves. Sadly evidence points to local extinctions of adders particularly.
The Make the Adder Count is geared to addressing this problem. Assessing status of adders and making them count in habitat management is the aim of the project.

The seminar led to selection of land managers and planners who were the most important people to raise the profile of reptiles to.

Hopefully an advice note will be produced on this as we go into the Herpetofauna Workers’ Meeting in January 2012.

Posted with WordPress for BlackBerry.


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