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Wall Lizards - Dorset

Printed From: Reptiles and Amphibians of the UK
Category: Alien & Naturalised species of the UK
Forum Name: Aliens
Forum Description: Concerning non-native species that should be removed from the wild
URL: http://www.herpetofauna.co.uk/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=4872
Printed Date: 15 Dec 2018 at 6:32pm
Software Version: Web Wiz Forums 11.06 - http://www.webwizforums.com


Topic: Wall Lizards - Dorset
Posted By: Rags
Subject: Wall Lizards - Dorset
Date Posted: 28 Jan 2015 at 6:21pm

As a new member on the forum I have taken time reading back through several of the older threads. I have noticed that there has been some discussion over the continued existence of a couple of the historic colonies of Podarcis muralis in Dorset.

I can confirm the Wall lizards at Durlston Country Park near Swanage were still showing on a stone wall near the castle back on the 22nd September last year. Four juveniles were out basking, no adults seen. I reported the sighting to one of the rangers at the park who told me he had never seen them in the park before.

I recently visited Corfe castle but the weather was against me and nothing was seen lizard wise. I did speak to a young lady working in the ticket booth and she confirmed that lizards were frequently seen on the walls and crossing the path in the Summer. I'm guessing these would be PM but will try to get some photos to confirm this later in the year.

I have never visited the sites on Portland but with luck and a following wind should be able to get there at least a couple of times this Spring...watch this space.


Durlston Wall Lizards...

https://flic.kr/p/q23b9j" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/qFBAsD" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/qFzXpz" rel="nofollow">



Replies:
Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 29 Jan 2015 at 9:35pm
When I went to Portland it was specifically to see a wall lizard. Somewhere (on here?) I discovered the exact spot that they were located. We drove there, parked, walked a short distance and voila! I was fascinated by their lack of fear of us and also how many there were in a small area. I think I had heard there were two groups of them on Portland, but we didn't go anywhere else specifically to look. We did amble all along looking at seemingly similar habitat, but no nothing. Where they were must have something just suitable.

-------------
Suz


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 9:55am
Hi Suzy,

Interested to hear of your contact with the Portland Podarcis. Any directional help in locating them would be appreciated.

I have checked the link to the 'SARG' Wall lizard site. It does suggest there are at least three sites for wall lizards on Portland. One at Tout Quarry, West Weare, another at a disused quarry at Longstone Ope and a third at Cheyne Wear. All sites are close together so it should be practical to check them all on one visit. It looks as if the Tout Quarry site lizards may be more elusive, if indeed they are still there.

Just waiting from some slightly better weather before making the trip. Any success or failure I will post on here.




Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 10:48am
Hi Rags interesting to hear that they are in the park in Swanage spotting the thread I was about to have a fit as I thought you had spotted one this week keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Alex2
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 11:34am
Interesting re Durlston Podarcis - I live in Langton which is very close to DCP, and wasn't aware they were found there, have always assumed this to be a myth. They are present at Winspit, though not in the numbers seen some 10 years ago, and although this was never a large colony, I believe their numbers have been affected partly due to collection (much like how I suspect the Boscombe Green's have been decimated). The Corfe Castle population was largely rounded up several years ago and I've not seen a single specimen in my last 4 visits, the last being late summer last year.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 2:52pm
Could it be that the original Durlston CP Podarcis did indeed die out a few years back?

The ranger I spoke to hadn't noticed them. I've visited before and not found any. Alex2 lives nearby and was also unaware of them.

The SARG 'Wall Lizard Project' lists the colony as;

"History:

This unconfirmed colony, based at the site of Durlston Castle, is believed to comprise the green-backed form, as found at the other two Purbeck coastal sites. The date of origin is unknown

Only 3 individuals, all males, have been reported between 1999 and 2001. This is a presumed private release that did not establish a viable colony.

Extirpation date:

Circa 1990s"


In September I saw no adults, only four juveniles of a similar age. Could it be someone has unlawfully reintroduced them once again?



 


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 5:04pm
Hi Keith,

It certainly seems a lot chillier this week compared to the rest of January. I haven't been over to Durlston CP yet but there is a chance they could already be showing. Certainly the ones at more established colonies close to Bournemouth have continued to be active throughout the Winter so far - as reported on the thread - 'RAUK's a Herp a day!'




Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 31 Jan 2015 at 11:02pm
Rags, I've looked back and I was told of the location of sites on Portland by someone who used to post on here. You seem to have got the names anyway, and I see a Google search helps pretty much. We parked and walked a very short distance and the ones we saw were not in a large quarry. We did look at the quarries but saw nothing.
This is one from our visit, which was 2 April 2007.




-------------
Suz


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 01 Feb 2015 at 4:22pm
Okay thanks, I'll see what I can turn up.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 3:31pm
Bournemouth Promenade, west of the pier. A bit of bright morning sunshine but a chill wind.

8 Wall Lizards out basking today...

Some easy to spot among the dead bracken.

https://flic.kr/p/r3CnUX" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/qo4Gs7" rel="nofollow">

Others not so easy...

https://flic.kr/p/r1J8fV" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/r3w57L" rel="nofollow">

(Five minutes after taking these I was flayed by a monster hailstorm. Roll on proper Spring please!)


Posted By: GemmaJF
Date Posted: 23 Feb 2015 at 4:33pm
Well at least with those pictures we can pretend spring is here Smile 


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 21 Mar 2015 at 7:36pm
With lovely sunny start to the day I went down to the beach to the west of Bournemouth pier to see how the local Wall lizards were enjoying Spring. I counted a total of 49 Podarcis muralis between Alum Chine and Flaghead Chine. Adults and juveniles showing. This total was achieved without any serious searching.

https://flic.kr/p/rrv7TQ" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rJ5LPK" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rJ5Ncz" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rpLaKc" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rJ5Rtp" rel="nofollow">

Most colourful lizard of the day went to this stunner with yellow and lime green stripes.

https://flic.kr/p/rrCKAe" rel="nofollow">

One predictable downside was the appearance of this...

https://flic.kr/p/rHYNW9" rel="nofollow">

...right in the middle of an area where I only usually see these...

https://flic.kr/p/rrwbMm" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rrv6Co" rel="nofollow">



 


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 21 Mar 2015 at 7:42pm
Just realised my 'Lizard of the day' didn't look that bright in the photo. Here's a shot taken when the sun was shining.

https://flic.kr/p/rFP6V5" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 22 Mar 2015 at 5:05pm
Astonishing numbers!  if only our natives were faring so well...   let us know what happens to the sand lizards in that place where the wall lizards have colonised.  Any sign of bilineata yet?  still a bit cold, I guess.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 22 Mar 2015 at 9:54pm
I have previously seen the Wall lizards encroaching into the Sand lizard habitat, but at either end of this particular patch. This is the first time I have seen a juvenile Wall right in the middle.

Not had a chance to look for L.bilineata yet this year. My scant records for the previous two years suggest it will still be a bit early for them. If the weather stays sunny I'll take a look this week.


Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 22 Mar 2015 at 11:26pm
I doubt that places where wall lizards are found are managed much. Where they do occur they seem to achieve high densities. The small experience of the ones on Portland that I had showed them much less timid than the common lizard. Whether this would translate into aggressive behaviour towards the latter I don't know.I'm not familiar with sand lizards.


-------------
Suz


Posted By: Rob_H
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2015 at 8:34am
Great photos!!

Suzy, would you mind please sending me a pm with the details of that green wall lizard?!

Rags; The yellow ventral colours on that green guy are very cool! You don't often see that with the nigriventris guys. Have you noticed any mating behaviour yet? I haven't been able to get down to any of the colonies this year.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 24 Mar 2015 at 9:10am
Hi Rob_H

I haven't seen any mating behavior so far this year but the pre-nuptials seem to be underway.

https://flic.kr/p/rbBQZy" rel="nofollow">

Suzy- I agree that the Podarcis are certainly the least nervous of our lizards and seem to tolerate passing pedestrians, dogs and bouncing beach balls far better than the L.agilis they cohabit with. Once actually disturbed they seem far quicker to return from cover and back to previous basking spots.

I have never witnessed any behavior between the two species that could be classed as aggression.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 25 Mar 2015 at 9:31pm
With the weather forecast promising sunshine for a good part of the day, it was decided to make a try for the Podarcis sites in Portland.

Walking north along the coastal path from Portland Bill, along the eastern side we eventually came to the quarry workings at Longstone Ope. The sun was disappearing behind heavy clouds and the wind was fairly chilly. At the base of one of the quarry walls we managed to count 8 P.m. in a clump of bramble and loose stone. All were brown backed in colour, although one showed bright yellow lateral stripes.

Moving on a short distance to Cheyne Weare Quarry we were able to find a group of around ten adult and juvenile lizards, also brown backed, between the viewpoint car park and the old quarry. Shortly after our arrival the sun completely disappeared and rain began falling.

Finally my wife and I visited the Sculpture Park/Quarry at Tout Quarry. Despite searching for an hour and a half (and getting stranded on various rocky outcrops with vertical drops to certain doom), we were unable to find any reptiles at all.

Will try again later in the year.

Longstone Ope
https://flic.kr/p/rKKgMJ" rel="nofollow">

Cheyne Weare
https://flic.kr/p/qR3gUQ" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rN3b1B" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 26 Mar 2015 at 6:37am
nice detective work! I've only ever found them at Cheyne Weare. The ones here look identical to ones just across the Channel so I used to hope they were natural colonists / stowaways perhaps from the Portland stone export industry but the various other forms on Portland suggest that these particular ones are just another of the (illegal) release programme that's been responsible for populating the south coast of Dorset in the last couple of decades.


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 27 Mar 2015 at 7:01am
Hi Will interesting theory just a line to let all.known I am still about keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: GemmaJF
Date Posted: 27 Mar 2015 at 7:18am
You had as worried Keith Wink


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 27 Mar 2015 at 8:14am
Hi Keith - good to hear from youBig smile!  I wish those wall lizards were Frenchy stowaways!


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 27 Mar 2015 at 6:53pm
hi folks yes got a bit lathargic over the cold months an should have made the effort to look on some of the nicer days but been to miserable as I have been helping out some poor abadoned cat and kittens since last year and one of my favourites went missing for a week and I found her dead under a bush and will have to start bucking my ideas up

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Tom Omlette
Date Posted: 27 Mar 2015 at 8:46pm
hi Keith. nice to hear from you.

tom



Posted By: GemmaJF
Date Posted: 28 Mar 2015 at 7:27pm
Sorry to hear you have been feeling down Keith, come on cheer up spring is here, sort of. Smile


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 29 Mar 2015 at 6:45pm
Thanks Gemma, since you posted that its rained non-stop. Confused


Posted By: GemmaJF
Date Posted: 29 Mar 2015 at 7:15pm
hmmmm yep, been pouring down here and the wind has been howling. It was nice on Friday though. Big smile


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 12 Apr 2015 at 5:39pm
Plenty of Podarcis out in the sunshine this week. Including this yellow chinned male from Southbourne direction.

https://flic.kr/p/s46t1c" rel="nofollow">

(First Lb seen this week also.)



Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 19 Apr 2015 at 9:21pm
https://flic.kr/p/rVBqY9" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rgnSGH" rel="nofollow">

Two photos of the same juvenile Pm found at Durlston Country Park today. Looks like they are still hanging on.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 20 Apr 2015 at 7:04am
an interesting record - I had assumed with all the building works at the 'castle' itself they would definitely have been tipped over the edge, but evidently not - even if they have been displaced down the hill a bit. BTW I failed to find any Lb's at Boscombe yesterday in spite of decent weather; I know it's probably a bit early but I think numbers are well down on a decade ago.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 20 Apr 2015 at 9:17am
I think the 'collectors' have been about already.

I spoke to 3 men with fishing rods and lizard nooses just last week who told me they were "Just counting the lizards because we don't have any where we come from..." (Which was apparently Mansfield.)

Sadly, very difficult to do anything about.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 20 Apr 2015 at 10:39am
Wow - sounds like a concerted effort to catch some lizards for commercial purposes, maybe? I hope they don't start on the Aesculapians...


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 20 Apr 2015 at 12:15pm
Or Sand Lizards...


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 10 May 2015 at 8:05am
Perfect conditions yesterday for reptiles at Winspit.

https://flic.kr/p/sCowE1" rel="nofollow">

All sizes and colours on display.

https://flic.kr/p/syEZNA" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/rDWUrh" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/sCx8Ee" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/sjmLfq" rel="nofollow">





Posted By: will
Date Posted: 10 May 2015 at 9:20am
that's well spotted - in more than one sense!  unusual to see such a green female at the bottom, already swelling up with her eggs.


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 10 May 2015 at 9:41am
Hi rags cant say I am not envious of you location and seeing thing as I have not been in Dorset herping for a while keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 10 May 2015 at 5:55pm
Thanks Will. I saw two or three apparently gravid females along the stone piles, which suggest this population is still going well. Also found some of last years juveniles. It was my first ever visit to the site so I can't say how numbers compare to previous years. Comments in older threads seem to suggest it was historically a fairly large colony.

Hi Keith, having only lived in Dorset for a little over two years it still feels like I'm on an extended holiday. Prior to that I lived in a county which has practically no adders!


Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 10 May 2015 at 11:22pm
Love Portland for the archaeology - industrial and prehistoric, and those neat lizards! 

-------------
Suz


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 7:26am
Hi Rags I find it a it hard to believe your not having much luck in seeing adders I have found them bountiful in Purbeck and surrounding area. with smoothies being the dominent species. Keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 9:19am
Hi Suzy, this quarry is very like those in Portland but is actually situated on the Isle of Purbeck. I think both sites produced limestone, I'm not sure if one was considered superior stone to the other. I think the Purbeck quarries may have produced some marble at one time.




Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 9:35am
Agilis wrote;
"Hi Rags I find it a it hard to believe your not having much luck in seeing adders I have found them bountiful in Purbeck and surrounding area. with smoothies being the dominent species. Keith"

I agree there's no problem with finding adders in Dorset.  I previously lived in Oxfordshire which is the exact opposite. Adders in Oxfordshire are as rare as liberal-democrat M.P.s after the election.

Ray


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 11:01am
hi Ray you had me worried glad thats sorted luckey you living in DORSET
are you near the main herp areas ? keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 5:51pm
Oops Rags, wrong bit of Dorset! I thought it didn't look familiar, but then I've not been to Portland that many times. 

-------------
Suz


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 6:56pm
Suzy-Portland to Purbeck is actually not that far as the crow flies.


Hi Keith, I live in Westbourne which is part of Bournemouth. We are around a twenty minute walk down Alum Chine to the beach and around a thirty minute walk to a couple of Sand Lizard sites. The Purbecks are easily reached via the chain ferry at Sandbanks (except during busy periods in the Summer and bank holidays). In the other direction it's a twenty minute car ride out to some excellent habitat in the Christchurch direction. I guess there are better locations to live which would put you right in the thick of the best reptile and amphibian habitats but this works for us. On the down side, no garden, which is why I enjoy the garden finds and photos in the 'Herp-a-day' thread so much.

Ray (- not working for the Bournemouth tourist board.)


Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 11 May 2015 at 10:13pm
Rags I lived in Wimborne 1970-72. My husband lived in Canford Cliffs. We used to go into a record shop in Westbourne (remember records...vinyl...ha ha). We used to walk down the chines and must have passed lots of lizards, but I wasn't interested then. 

-------------
Suz


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 12 May 2015 at 6:03pm
Lizards are still there, but the record shop is long gone!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 09 Jun 2015 at 3:27pm
A sunny morning along the beach and plenty of lizards out on show. A range of colours, shades and patterns...

https://flic.kr/p/upij7r" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/umMDgq" rel="nofollow">

An unusually light brown individual.
https://flic.kr/p/ts7SGm" rel="nofollow">

Posing.
https://flic.kr/p/u7yixj" rel="nofollow">

Heavily marked along the flanks.
https://flic.kr/p/ts8F4E" rel="nofollow">

Well patterned.
https://flic.kr/p/umMZRJ" rel="nofollow">


I still haven't had the opportunity to try for the Podarcis at Corfe but will make the trip later in the Summer.

Meanwhile I have noticed for the first time, a single male Pm in a garden at the top of one the Chines, a little distance from the other populations. This may suggest they are spreading into gardens away from the beach and cliff tops.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 09 Jun 2015 at 4:55pm
nice shots - especially the pair at the top!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 09 Jun 2015 at 6:26pm
Thanks Will. There seemed to be all sorts out on show this morning. I guess the conditions were just right. However the foliage is covering much more ground now making spotting and photography a bit harder.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 6:16am
I spent the day at Cotswold Wildlife Park in Oxfordshire yesterday. Despite perfect conditions and a lengthy search there was no sign of any Pm at the historic site within the park grounds.

I also managed to speak to one of the gardeners and a couple of members of staff, also the park's owner. No one could recall seeing any Wall lizards in the grounds in recent years. Looks like this small population has died out.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 6:46am
sounds fairly conclusive - I guess with other species one would be less hasty in saying a population is extinct, but wall lizards are so much more obliging than others in making themselves obvious!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 9:10pm
This population was in a fairly restricted area as well. Unless some have shifted elsewhere within the grounds then I would say extinct here.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 25 Jul 2015 at 5:46pm
After the rain of the previous couple of days I popped down to Boscombe clifftop to see how many Lb were showing in the morning sunshine....


Answer - none.  Best area for them reduced to a charred wasteland (once again)







There were however Podarcis sunbathing on the edges of the burn.



Posted By: Tom Omlette
Date Posted: 26 Jul 2015 at 9:35am
not looking good for them :(. keep us posted if you can

tim



Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 26 Jul 2015 at 6:47pm
Will do Tim, but I'm guessing the implications of this recent fire won't become evident until next Spring/Summer.


Posted By: Hawley
Date Posted: 27 Jul 2015 at 1:51pm


Saw lots of Wall Lizards at the Botanical Gardens at Ventnor on the Isle of Wight.  Apparantly there is a lizard walk around the town, but you have to purchase the map over the web www.gifttonature.org.uk



Also saw some common lizards in Parkhurst Forest on the island.


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 28 Jul 2015 at 7:45am
It always seems to be the most populated herp areas that these fires appear to ravage within the cliffs of Boscombe that some times makes me think these are started with the reason of wiping them out by people within the local park lands dept who wish to eradicate them from the councils Ne nature agenda? and it is also a quick solution to remove unwanted gorse and natural shrubs that can later be landscaped into pretty laid out flowery gardens costing the ratepayer thousands of quid to employ contractors rather then have reptiles rampaging on the cliff top paths scaring off the holiday makers !. But I am aware that illegal bbques are a fire hazard keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2015 at 10:00pm
Interesting conspiracy theory there Keith.

The area which has been burnt again is right next to the cliff top. It luckily didn't spread down the cliff towards the promenade and beach. I have seen small groups of local school kids sitting around in the gorse stand to have a fag and bunk off school. However the schools are on holiday at the moment so who knows.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 29 Jul 2015 at 10:03pm
Hi 'Hawley', Thanks for posting some Pm from over the water. I am yet to make the trip to check out the populations on IOW to see how they compare with those along the cliffs here.


Posted By: Tom Omlette
Date Posted: 01 Aug 2015 at 12:42pm
camping in charmouth over the next few days. mainly fossils but may get out on a reptile search. where id the nearest wall colony?

cheers
tim



Posted By: Suzy
Date Posted: 02 Aug 2015 at 10:39pm
I would think Portland Tim from where you are.
Others might have better suggestions.


-------------
Suz


Posted By: AGILIS
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2015 at 5:50am
Well Tim if you want a 100% sitings do the extra miles to Boscombe on the zigzag path their always there even with high density people milling around keith

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   LOCAL ICYNICAL CELTIC ECO WARRIOR AND FAILED DRUID


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2015 at 7:22am
Hi Tim - agree with Suz re Portland; Cheyne Weare has not disappointed me in the past - brown-backed form lizards are common in the disused quarry (along with adder, viv lizard and slowworm) - be careful though, as the path into it runs very close to the cliff edge!!

Also Abbotsbury Swannery has green backed wall lizards - west of Chesil Beach

Happy hunting!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2015 at 7:25am
If you check out the excellent wall lizard info on the sarg website it looks as if your nearest colony would be at Abbottsbury, a few miles east of you. I've never been to check this location so can't vouch for their existence. If there was no joy there you could continue on to Portland where wall lizards certainly do sunbathe on the rocks along the coast.

As Keith says, for certainty have a day out in Bournemouth.

Look forwards to seeing any photos you get.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2015 at 7:29am
Must have been typing my reply as Will was posting his advice.

Definitely Abbottsbury then would be your closest colony.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 03 Aug 2015 at 7:40am
great minds...

I've not done Abbotsbury myself but I have heard the colony still exists - I think it can be found around the car park on walls as well as inside, if, like me, you are a cheapskate!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 07 Aug 2015 at 3:30pm
As might be expected, many Pm out and about along the prom today. Numbers out for the bright sunshine.

Found one area where winged ants were emerging from an underground colony. The nearby lizards were closing in from all directions presenting some interesting confrontations between all present. One "Beachmaster" seemed to get things it's own way with everything getting out of the path. Other lizards were left to sort things out by posing and chasing. It made interesting watching for a while - until I got too hot and had to find an ice cream. (Sympathy not required here!)

https://flic.kr/p/x3ccvP" rel="nofollow">
Lizards playground. The ants were emerging from the Hottentot Fig in the middle.

https://flic.kr/p/x2rEws" rel="nofollow">
Lizards closing in on the food source.

https://flic.kr/p/x2rnqJ" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/x3JRpi" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/x2rHch" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/w6aAyW" rel="nofollow">
One juv. grabs an ant and eats it quickly before others move in.

https://flic.kr/p/wKzduW" rel="nofollow">

https://flic.kr/p/x2rsB5" rel="nofollow">
Result of previous conflict? (Or maybe a Herring Gull)

https://flic.kr/p/wKzNP5" rel="nofollow">
Beachmaster!

https://flic.kr/p/wKCh5U" rel="nofollow">
Meanwhile, further along the beach...






Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 30 Jan 2016 at 2:45pm
Half a dozen hardy lizards out catching the rays this morning along by Branksome Dean, Bournemouth.

A 'reptile fix' whilst waiting for the season proper to begin.

An adult thinking about it.
https://flic.kr/p/Dch4Hh" rel="nofollow">

One of last year's youngsters.
https://flic.kr/p/DB5vB7" rel="nofollow">


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 13 Jul 2016 at 4:34pm
First post for a while.

Needless to say the wall lizard colonies in this neck of the woods seem to be doing okay.

Couple of photos of gravid females seen at Durlston this morning. Clearly this colony not just hanging on, but expanding.

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Posted By: Hawley
Date Posted: 02 Aug 2016 at 2:01pm
Took the family to the beach at Boscombe for the day, hoping to maybe see a wall lizard but spotted a Western Green Lizard basking on a wall instead.  Laden with buckets and spades so couldn't get a photo, but they are quite impressive Big smile


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 04 Aug 2016 at 7:42am
Nice sighting Hawley. The green lizards have been difficult to spot this year.


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 09 Aug 2018 at 8:38pm
A long overdue update = 

Wall Lizards still visible in high numbers along the promenade at Bournemouth and Boscombe.

I have also seen a few at Durlston (Swanage) and one sunning itself at Corfe Castle last month. I haven't been to Portland or Winspit this year so can't comment on the populations there.


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 10 Aug 2018 at 12:53pm
Hi Ray - I've a very brief break in Wimborne next week, so will try to check out a few sites myself.  I'm guessing after years of poor hatching this summer's weather could see a reprieve for wall and green lizards in Dorset.


Posted By: chubsta
Date Posted: 10 Aug 2018 at 5:32pm
am going on holiday to dorset in a few weeks so will try to go on a lizard hunt!


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 11 Aug 2018 at 10:17am
Good luck 'Chubsta' I'm sure you'll spot something. 

Hi Will, I've not been about much this summer to check out how populations are doing. As previously stated, I'm not sure the different colonies to the west of Bournemouth pier have been affected by the weather patterns of the last couple of years. They just seem to plough on regardless - (as assessed by the Hamilton wandering method of scientific counting!)

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Posted By: will
Date Posted: 11 Aug 2018 at 9:00pm
fine photos Ray!  any sign of bilineata at Boscombe recently?


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 12 Aug 2018 at 9:15am
" any sign of bilineata at Boscombe recently?"

Sorry Will, I've not had many chances to check this year. August is a good month for them usually but now the weather has got wet and cool... Let us know how you get on if you manage to fit in a trip to the coast from Wimbourne.


Posted By: Tom Omlette
Date Posted: 12 Aug 2018 at 9:05pm
great pics


Posted By: Rags
Date Posted: 13 Aug 2018 at 8:45pm
Thanks Tom.

FYI Will - just had a late evening walk along the overcliff and there is a length of newly burnt area on the edge of the cliff at Portman Ravine (once again).


Posted By: will
Date Posted: 14 Aug 2018 at 9:32am
Thanks Ray, a regular thing there as you say.  Hopefully the recent rain will make any fires - especially on heathland of course - less likely from now on, though sadly it's too late for some.



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