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Amphibians and Reptiles

County Recorder: John Baker



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Species list

Adder
a close up of an adder

Adder Vipera berus

The adder is one of our three native snake species, most often found on heaths, moors and coastal areas. However, its secretive nature and camouflaged markings mean it often goes unnoticed. The adder is the UK’s only venomous snake. Image: Matt Berry/Greenwings Wildlife Holidays (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Common Lizard
a common lizard sitting on a leaf

Common Lizard Zootoca vivipara

The common (or viviparous) lizard is most frequently seen on commons, heaths, moorland, dry stone walls, embankments and
sea cliffs around the British Isles. Image: Paul Kitchener (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Common Toad
a common toad sitting in grass looking directly at the camera

Common Toad Bufo bufo

The common toad is widespread throughout mainland Britain. They prefer deeper water bodies in which to breed. These may include farm ponds, reservoirs, fish ponds or village duck ponds. Sadly these types of freshwater bodies are threatened in many parts of the UK and toads have been declining. Image: Paul Kitchener (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Grass Snake
a close up of a grass-snake

Grass Snake Natrix helvetica

Grass snakes are found throughout England and Wales. They feed primarily on fish and amphibians, and can occasionally venture into garden ponds in the summer months. Grass snakes are non-venomous and are extremely timid, moving off quickly when disturbed. If cornered they can feign death, and if handled frequently, produce a foul-smelling excretion. Image: Neil Rolph (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Great Crested Newt
an underwater picture of a great crested newt

Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus

Great crested newts are the largest of the UK's three native species, growing up to 17cm in length. They are dark brown or black in colour with a distinct ‘warty’ skin. The underside is bright orange with irregular black blotches. In the spring, males develop an impressive jagged crest along their back and a white 'flash' along the tail. Image: Alexandre Roux (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Natterjack Toad
a natterjack toad

Natterjack Toad Epidalea calamita

The natterjack toad is almost exclusively confined to coastal sand dune systems, coastal grazing marshes and sandy heaths. Natterjack toads are often associated with ponds in sand dune slacks, which are often more shallow and warm as they require warmer water to breed successfully. Image: Natural England/Peter Roworth (Flickr).

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist

Slow-worm
a close up of a slow worm

Slow-worm Anguis fragilis

Slow-worms are lizards, though they are often mistaken for snakes. Unlike snakes they have eyelids, a flat forked tongue and can drop their tail to escape from a predator. Slow-worms rarely bask in the open, instead preferring to hide under logs or in compost heaps. Image: Paul Kitchener (Flickr). 

Find out more: Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Suffolk Wildlife Trust, iNaturalist



A survey was run by Mark Jones, whilst based at SBRC between 1983 and 1986. SWT commissioned A Conservation Strategy for Reptiles and Amphibians in Suffolk from Herpetofauna International (T. Langton) in 1990. All recent (post-1980) records have been logged on RECORDER and are kept updated. There are currently over 15,200 records on the SBIS Database.

The Suffolk Amphibian and Reptile Group was launched in 1996 with the aim of species recording, site initiatives and landowner contact. Further information on National recording schemes can be found on the National Amphibian and Reptile Recording Scheme (NARRS) website.

There are over 7900 records of Amphibians and over 7300 records of Reptiles on the SBIS database.


Great Crested Newts

We currently hold over 1740 records of Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus in our database. Suffolk is a major stronghold for this species with its band of boulder clay surface geology lending itself to a high density of ponds.

Papers from Suffolk Natural History:
On the status of ponds and Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus in Suffolk. T. Langton, G. Millins & C. Langton


Summer survey technique for Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus. T. Langton


Suffolk ponds and Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus conservation: the national significance of Suffolk county analysis. T. Langton

Major Publications

The Reptiles of Suffolk. E.R. Rope (1934 TSNS 2: 209)


A survey of the Reptilia and Amphibia of Suffolk. M. Jones (1988 TSNS 24: 9)

Other papers from Suffolk Natural History

Amphibians and Reptiles on roads in northeast Suffolk. J.M.R. Baker (2020) Open
Suffolk ponds and Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus conservation: the national significance of Suffolk county analysis. T. Langton (2012) Open
Summer survey technique for Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus. T. Langton (2010) Open
On the status of ponds and Great Crested Newt Triturus cristatus in Suffolk. T. Langton, G. Millins & C. Langton (2007) Open
Green/Water Frogs in Suffolk. J. Baker & R. Norton (2006) Open
First leatherback turtle (Dermochelys coriacea) stranding for Suffolk. T.E.S. Langton, C.L. Beckett & J.P. Foster (1999) Open
Albino Common Frog, Rana temporaria L. in Ipswich. H. Mendel (1990) Open
Grass Snake at West Stow. R.E. (Stebbings 1988) p.99 Open
Conservation of Reptiles and Amphibians. J.W. Steward (1971) p.434 Open
The Reptiles of Suffolk. E.R. Rope (1934) Open


For images of Suffolk Priority species see our Pinterest Board

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