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First smooth newt of the year in Essex!

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herpetologic2 View Drop Down
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    Posted: 03 Jan 2007 at 10:47am

 

Hi All

My Dad in Essex has found a male newt in his pond on the 1st January, have people been out yet looking at their ponds at all - this sighting will cause problems with the phenology website as it is considered to be too early.........

Dad (Ray) has previously seen smoothies from the 6th January last year - I think that he has seen frogs and newts over the Xmas break but no newts in the pond until the new year....

Any other sightings ovr December or January?

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herpetologic2 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote herpetologic2 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 03 Jan 2007 at 10:47am

Too early for East Anglia I was meant to say

 

 

JC

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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 26 Aug 2007 at 5:36pm
can i put in a bid for the last newt of the year?
friday 24th august i spotted the first eft in my pond.
looked about a month old, but amazing how long they had avoided my attention despite me spending at least half an hour a day observing the goings on in the pond.
i guess the eggs must have been laid in early/mid july.
is this unusual?
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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 28 Aug 2007 at 11:02am
yes i meant the larvae.
the pond was laid in 2006.
first year i had frogs only.
this year (the second year) smooth newts moved in.
strange thing is they only appeared about june and then again without sign of any male (none had crests).
since they came after the usual breeding season and there were no males i resigned myself to the fact that i wouldnt get any breeding.
it was only on friday 24th that i saw something that looked like a fish darting around in the shallow end of the pond.
on closer inspection it had four legs and the feathery reddish gills behind the eyes.
james grundys book would have me guess they were about 6 weeks old.
this would give a birth in early july.
they cannot be any older than this since i replaced all the plants in my pond during the first week of july (under the mistaken impression that there would be no breeding for the reasons given above).
i would guess that the unseasonal weather would have something to do with the very late breeding (even though i had frogspawn in february).
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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 11 Sep 2007 at 2:15am
just noticed a newt larvae yesterday (10th september) that hadn't even developed back legs yet (had front legs though).
i'll guess they won't develop into efts till mid-late october.
i think all this lateness occured because a local school is undergoing building work which started at the beginning of the school holidays.
as a part of this the pond was removed and since this is about 50 metres from mine i think they wandered over and resumed their egg laying in my pond after a small delay.
the amount of larvae in my pond don't seem a great amount for the 3 female newts i spotted laying eggs, so i think most of them were laid (and destroyed) in the school pond, and only the remainder in mine much later.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote snakey Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 20 Sep 2007 at 4:05pm
i doubt if larvae as young as that will morph this year and will probably overwinter as aquatic larvae. even in warmer than average years e.g. last year, many l.vulgaris and l. helveticus larvae fail to morph in my pond and many other local ponds untill the following spring
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Donny Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 23 Sep 2007 at 8:16am
A lot of the literature I read when I first started finding out about our reptiles and amphibians said things like 'newts are found in the water from this month to this month and then become terrestrial' etc.

This may be true for the most part, but I have seen Palmate Newt adults and eggs in the pond in my parent's garden (Scotland) in August.  The same pond also has a population of several common frogs who can be found perched along the edges or semi-floating on top of the water weeds and (very) occasionally 'croaking' all summer long (or 'short' might be more accurate).

Maybe it's something do to with lack of other suitable habitat nearby, or lack of predation / competition from other species, this being a garden pond. 




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lalchitri View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 Sep 2007 at 4:31am
here's a couple of newt larvae from my pond snapped yesterday (23 sep)
we are into october next week and they still have gills (though quite resorbed)
this were floating around the edges of the pond so i assume they are the most developed of the lot as the younger ones tend to hide and stick to the bottom of the pond more.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Feb 2008 at 5:38am
decided-to-clean-some-of-the-leaves-out-from-the-bottom-of-m y-pond-yesterday
took-two-small-scoops-out-and-put-them-by-the-pond-edge.
noticed-3-smooth-newts-amongst-the-leaves(1crested-male-and- 2-plump-females)
since-i-had-larvae-upto-october-the-seasons-have-almost-over lapped-with-only-nov&dec-being-non-newt-months.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote lalchitri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 02 Feb 2008 at 2:31pm
would the surface of my pond freezing over prevent the newts from coming up for air and hence drowning?
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