London’s first Amphibian and Reptile Atlas underlines the need for more information on the whereabouts of London’s species and the vital role of the public in helping to secure a future for these threatened species.
The first ‘London Amphibian and Reptile Atlas’ was launched at the end of July by Amphibian and Reptile Conservation (ARC) and gives insight on how these species are distributed across our capital city.
For the first time ever, the whereabouts of London’s amphibians and reptiles can now be made publicly accessible to all.
The atlas is the first comprehensive map-based view of London’s native amphibian and reptile species. It provides information on the preferred habitat of each species found in the capital and exhibits, also for the first time, maps showing suitable habitat within Greater London.
Sophie Hinton, CLARE Project Officer says:
“It is only once we know where London’s amphibians and reptiles are living that we can then identify thriving or vulnerable areas, including ‘hot spots’, their last remaining strongholds and the key areas to their conservation. With this in mind, the ‘London Amphibian and Reptile Atlas’ provides the first steps towards targeted conservation efforts for the species and ensuring their survival in the capital.
This is just the start. There are still lots of gaps in the information we have managed to collect over the last year. We need a London-wide, long-term effort in wildlife recording in order to produce an atlas which accurately represents the distribution of these species. Even recording a sighting as ‘common’ as the common frog will make a huge difference.”
The atlas is the result of the CLARE (Connecting London’s Amphibian and Reptile Environments) Project run by ARC in collaboration with London Wildlife Trust, GiGL (Greenspace Information for Greater London), London Amphibian and Reptile Group (LARG) and funded by Heritage Lottery Fund.
The Atlas is hosted online by GiGL www.gigl.org.uk , London’s Environmental Record Centre. It will be updated on an annual basis as new records are anticipated to come in throughout the year.