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A second cluthttp://www.ch for Surrey sand lizards

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AGILIS View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AGILIS Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: A second cluthttp://www.ch for Surrey sand lizards
    Posted: 20 Jun 2015 at 8:19am
Cheer's Peter yes very familiar with the Kettlebury hill area and liked your pics Keith
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iowarth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 10:25pm
I agree with Peter that the behavioural differences between dune and heathland animals are significant - much more so than their appearance.

Having said that, and much as I love all sand lizards, a classic Merseyside male in full breeding colour is simply out of this world!

Chris
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 2:13pm
very interesting Paul - suggests that sperm retention is not an option, then, I guess? could something this basic be different between the various sand lizard races?

great photos Peter - I've never seen them in full breeding condition - definitely on my bucket list!
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Peter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 2:07pm
It's my belief that the dune race and heathland race animals have significantly different behaviour patterns.  
 
Any old excuse for a few Merseyside animals.....


nt behaviour patterns.   
Any old excuse for a few Merseyside animals.....
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e: peter.hill@arc-trust.org
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Paul Hudson Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 12:55pm
Over the years I've produced a lot of second clutches from the captive Merseyside sand lizards, and every time this has happened I've witnessed a second round of mating, usually within a week or so of laying the first clutch, in years when my males have gone out of breeding condition, despite the generous amounts of food that I offer the females they have never laid without the second bout of mating.

Also on the Merseyside dunes some young females probably laying in their first year have been seen gravid as late as the third week of July.

Edited by Paul Hudson - 19 Jun 2015 at 1:01pm
Paul Hudson
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Peter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19 Jun 2015 at 10:52am

Just for Keith.  Wink   Here are some pics of where you originally thought I was from a week or so ago, as well as some of the indigenous locals.







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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Jun 2015 at 9:07am
thanks for the fast replies Peter and Chris - as ever, fascinating stuff! and yes, as a non-Facebook / Farcebook user I would not have seen these photos without them being posted here.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Iowarth Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Jun 2015 at 9:00am
Hi everyone

Firstly, thanks for posting the excellent pictures and account. Not everyone here is a Farcebook enthusiast so this was an important opportunity for them to see this.

As regards double clutching, this is a very difficult thing to keep track of in the wild. The reason? Depending on weather, food availability etc, the laying season for first clutches can be (exceptionally) as early as late April and as late as mid to late June. We have, however, observed it in captive populations where the same factors are relevant but conditions in the vivaria are optimised and the food supply never ending.

This years rather strange weather (presumably) has resulted in males continuing in full breeding colouration and behaviour and mating is rife although most females laid 2-4 weeks ago. THis would improve the chances of a second clutch - in fact the first female who laid is again digging test burrows even now!

It is also worth noting that even when males go out of breeding condition early, females will still sometimes lay a viable second clutch. Presumably this indicates that sperm storage can also be a factor.

All the best
Chris
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Peter Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Jun 2015 at 8:50am
I know that Paul Hudson who breeds the Merseyside race for the reintroduction programme regularly double clutches his captive females, which I imagine is simply a case of providing the good care and attention to detail that amounts to the equivalent for the lizards of an exceptionally good season.   I very much doubt that this occurs very often naturally on northern dune systems, but in good years on southern heaths, it would not be unreasonable to assume that it does occur naturally from time to time.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote will Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18 Jun 2015 at 6:10am
Hi Peter

can you explain the phenomenon of double clutching please? I have found gravid females in Dorset in late July which have subsequently laid eggs at the start of August. I assumed that they would have fertilised those eggs with stored sperm from spring matings. But your Surrey lizards are still copulating, suggesting that a second clutch will be freshly fertilised. It also occurs to me that if second clutches are being laid as early as mid June then this really is evidence of climate change - they're behaving more like wall lizards! Perhaps Chris can tell us what the pattern is with his captive females?
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