Saturday, 20 September 2008

Slow Worm release at Rodden Nature Reserve

A while back Frome Area Wildlife Group (FAWG) who manage Rodden Nature Reserve on the outskirts of Frome were contacted by Michael Woods Associates, Ecological Constultants with a view to releasing some Slow Worms that needed to be moved due to a local development going ahead on the site where they are located at present.
The consultants did a survey at Rodden Reserve to ascertain whether there were already Slow Worms on site. It seems there weren't, so the release is going ahead.
Yesterday I met up with Georgie, the lady involved in the release to take some photos.
The following 4 photos are of a sub-adult.

These next 2 are of a young Slow Worm.

To date, 20 have been released with hopefully many more in the next few weeks.
Slow Worms are in fact legless lizards, but are often mistaken for a snake and consequently killed although they are completely harmless. They hibernate underground from October to March. Mating takes place in April and May and from 6 to 12 young are born in August or September. Young Slow Worms take about 3 years to mature. They can live longer than any other lizards, one in captivity has reached it's fifties! That is very unlikely in the wild as they have many predetors including frogs, hedgehogs, adders, rats and kestrels.


Mary said...

Wonderful that you are saving them. They do look like snakes. How odd to be a lizard, but look like a snake and be called a worm! No wonder we get confused!

Mary said...

You mentioned you ever see them or get photos? I seem to ask everyone in Great Britain that.

Jenny said...

Hi Mary
We used to have one visit our garden many years ago, but not now which is a great shame. Sometimes I see them squished on the road. They are pretty much night time animals. Believe me, if I was able to photograph one and post it I would and will! (-:

Mosura said...

Thats terrific - I hope they thrive!

I've only ever seen half a slow worm. I was walking up a track and found the tail wriggling around. There was not one around for miles so I assume it had a run in with some other wildlife. Hopefully the other half escaped.

I had hedgehogs in the garden a couple of time when I was in Scotland.

Adrian said...

Hey Wren

Nice shots of the Slow Worms. I am keeping an eye out for them in the compost heap. On the hedgehog front, as you know we hardly see any round here but then I have seen three in the last fews days....spread across the road unfortunately!

See you soon, Adgi

Jenny said...

Hi Alan, I think if it survived that they can grow another tail. I guess you have spiney echidnas now instead?

Hi Adgi, did you get out today, it was a gorgeous day, but, except for an hour this morning, I was stuck indoors doing this arts week thing! Sigh.......

Denise said...

I have never in my life seen a legless lizard before. That is totally fascinating and I think it is marvellous of you all to save them.

Eve said...

Hi Jenny!
Your photos are top notch!! I didn't know a thing about these guys, well maybe way back in my head there is some knowledge because I'm a nature freak, but I am loving this post to bring little bits of nature to the forefront. Mary's right...what a confusing critter!! Wish I could have been there to lend a hand!

Mary Hughes Studio said...

Great sky photo!