The Dorset Six

A quick recap of this year’s hunt to see all our native reptiles whilst waiting for my arm to heal (using binoculars and cameras whilst suffering from a broken arm isn’t advisable.)

The Lizards

Sand Lizard (male) at Higher Hyde HeathSand Lizard (male) at Higher Hyde Heath
Sand Lizard (male) at Higher Hyde HeathSand Lizard (male) at Higher Hyde Heath
Sand Lizard (female) at Higher Hyde HeathSand Lizard (female) at Higher Hyde Heath
Common Lizard at Higher Hyde HeathCommon Lizard at Higher Hyde Heath
Slow Worm (Legless Lizard) at ArneSlow Worm (or Legless Lizard) at Arne
The Snakes

Adder close to Dancing Ledge, Langton MataversAdder, Langton Matravers

A young Grass Snake at ArneGrass Snake discovered whilst on a reptile ramble at Arne (RSPB)
Young Grass Snake found on the reptile ramble at Arne
Young Smooth Snake found on the reptile ramble at ArneA young Smooth Snake again discovered on a reptile ramble at Arne.

Unless you’re extremely lucky the chances of finding a Smooth Snake entwined in some heather whilst walking across the Dorset Heaths is about the same as winning the lottery.  Fortunately the RSPB have around 50 corrugated steel sheets lying around. These heat up in the early morning sunshine and attract the Smooth Snakes.  

The other 5 reptiles can be found relatively easily, assuming you’re patient and know where to look – likewise the introduced Wall Lizard. Although human deaths from Adder bites are rare it’s probably wise not to get too close. Likewise allowing Muttley to stick his nose into the vegetation growing alongside paths isn’t clever.

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