Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Hardy Adders defy the late Winter

With possibly the coldest March on record for a long time finding suitable days to go out in the field are few and far between. With 3 days off work this week I felt sure after all the bad weather I would get one decent day, but the forecast said otherwise. So surprise yesterday morning when I woke to find the sun shining! A text from Tracy Farrer, sunny at hers in Shirebrook, sunny at mine Northwest Sheffield so must be sunny in between, so we arranged to meet at 10am. Got there full cloud cover, however it must have been sunny earlier because we got a record count of 14 male adders at the first stop 280masl. Moving up the hill to another more exposed site at 320masl we could only find another 2 and a ditch that normally has quite a few didn't have any. Common Frogs Rana temporaria had laid spawn with parts of clumps exposed from the water frozen. The winter keeps battling on, its just stopped snowing outside this morning!!!!

Sunday, 3 March 2013

And the Adders are Back.

It has been a typical Northern English winter with plenty of rain, snow, cold temperatures and wind. So a little later than last year I ventured out today in a small window of opportunity and had a nice count of 11 male Adders Vipera berus plus a single Viviparous Lizard Zootoca vivipara (which looked ill). I had these in a period of one hour then it clouded over and got cool again so I didn't go to any further sites. Chris Monk saw Adders a couple of weeks ago in this area on the 18th of Feb and Tracy Farrer had 21 yesterday. At this time of year snakes are very approachable and all photos are in situ without disturbing the animals.
All photos © Carl Corbidge

4 together
 3 together
 Above and below no 1

 Above and below different snake

 Above and below different again.

 Above different again
 Above different again
 Above and below one of the bluish snakes

 Above a small snake in need of sloughing
 And the last one found distinctive with little white spot on chin.
Same 3 as the second photo above.

A poor little lizard that didn't seem to be able to open it's eyes.