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Natterjack toad found kent-sussex border

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lauriek View Drop Down
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    Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 3:37pm

Hi,

A few nights ago I was on a slug-killing mission in the garden and I found a toad on the patio. At the time I didn't realise there was anything special about it but I took a few photo's anyway as I am trying to put together a photographic catalogue of the wildlife we have out there..

Anyway, a couple of days after the actual encounter I was looking through a wildlife book and realised that this was not a common toad and was in fact an adult Natterjack Toad, which I had heard of but never seen before.

I haven't been able to find out much about them except that they are rare and endangered (and limited to a few locations in the UK, which I cannot find a list of anywhere), and they like open chalkland, near the sea. Well I live in Wadhurst, which is about 30 miles from the coast, it doesn't seem chalky and its fairly well wooded around here.

My questions are:

(a) is this a known location where these beasties have been found before?

(b) should I notify anyone that I found one here?

(c) would anyone be interested in some photo's or a couple of video's I took of it?

Cheers!

Laurie

(Cross posted to Natterjack toad forum from UK reptiles and amphibians forum as I realised this was a better place for the post!)

 

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Laurie Knight
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote -LAF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 5:10pm
Hi Laurie, I should say thatif you can post a picture on these forums it should generate a lot of interest, just to confirm the id. I don't know if there is a known site near you but the number of known inland sites is very small. There were certainly historic records from nr Maidstone, which isn't too far from you.

Cheers, Lee.
Lee Fairclough
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote administrator Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 7:42pm

Hi Laurie,

 If the pictures are digital you can mail them to me at the address at the top of the page and I will place them in this thread.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lauriek Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 8:31pm

Hiya, I am just emailing the pictures into the forum, they should be with the moderator in 10-15 minutes..

Interesting comments from David, I used to be in the scouts myself and did actually go on a scout camp on Ashdown forest, but never saw any interesting toads then, I suppose that would have been about the early 1980's..

I should point out that I've only made one sighting so far and was lucky to have the camera handy, so I don't think I'm sitting on a huge population pocket. Does anyone know how far these little beasties are likely to wander from their breeding grounds?

Hope the pictures help. I have two (fairly crappy) 3-4mb mov videos I took at the same time if anyone is interested, they show it hopping and running along.

Cheers!

    Laurie

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lauriek Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 9:12pm

Doubts?!

I hope I am wrong but looking at the pictures on this site it is not clear to me now that this is a Natterjack as none of my photo's show the yellow line.

I could be the victim of a poor wildlife book - which going by their pictures and comments I identified the beast by. I apologise profusely for causing any undue excitement if this is the case! <embarrased shuffle> But hopefully my pics should be with the forum administrator now who should be better able than me to tell what it was!

<fingers crossed hoping not to look like a complete idiot! />

Thought it only fair to mention it as it came to me!

Laurie

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote administrator Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 9:13pm

Laurie's Pictures,

 

 

 

 

I selected 3 images from those you sent Laurie that give clear distinguishing features between the Common Toad Bufo bufo and the Natterjack Bufo calamita, the first image shows the parotoid glands diverge lateraly towards the back of the animal, the second that there is no clearly defined vertebral stripe, I'm always willing to be proven totally wrong, but I would say this is a Common Toad

Take a look on the RAUK ID pages for the animals concerned for descriptions and comparison photographs.

http://www.herpetofauna.co.uk/natterjack_toad.htm

http://www.herpetofauna.co.uk/common_toad.htm

Thanks for sending the images, they are lovely photographs of the UK amphibian I like the most



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lauriek Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 9:20pm

Doh, I feel a right plonker now!

Would it be possible for you to edit the article heading and add NOT to the end of it to save getting anyone else unnecessarily excited please!

I think it's only fair to mention that I used Collins "Complete British wildlife" to (wrongly it seems) identify this toad as I do not have any amphibian specific books. I now realise that I should have come here first!!

Cheers and sorry to anyone reading this thread who feels I wasted your time!

Laurie

Non toad expert 2003

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote -LAF Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 9:21pm
Hi Lauriek, I agree with Gemma that this is definately a common toad, and a rather handsome animal indeed. Fab hindleg markings. Your description of it hopping confirms this identity (natterjacks run but don't hop). I would say that he (or she) was doing the same thing as you that night, and controlling the slugs, they're great things to have in the garden!

Cheers, Lee.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lauriek Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 9:26pm

David,

You are absolutely right, and I will now have to go out of my way to spot a real one somewhere! ;)

  Laurie

 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote administrator Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 Jul 2003 at 10:36pm

Hi Laurie,

I can change the posting if you really want, but personally think that it illustrates the differences between the 2 species very well and might be very helpful to someone else in the future to identify the animals, I miss-identified what is probably the most commonly kept pet snake species in the world the other week.. just a case that I've not kept them or had an interest in that particular species, but they bare superficial resemblance to a European species I have kept - most important thing must be that you were interested enough to find out more which is why the forum is here! 

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