Lizard

Latin name: Zootoca vivipara

Lizards are often the first of the reptiles out of hibernation in the Spring. They may be seen basking in sheltered, sunny places like footpaths on mild, sunny days after rain from early spring until the beginning of October. The colouration of common lizards is variable but mainly shades of green and brown with light and dark coloured spots lines or flecks.

The common lizard, is thought to be widespread throughout the country, living in heathland and grassland habitats. In the Yorkshire Dales National Park this species is thought to be widespread but not common. However, nationally its numbers are declining due to habitat loss. Consequently, in the national Species and Habitats Review 2007, the slow worm was added to the UK list of priority species for biodiversity action and in 2010 it became a priority species in the Yorkshire Dales National Park.

The wildlife conservation team of the Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority is working with local volunteers to assist with the National Amphibian and Reptile Recording Scheme (NARRS). The aim is to increase the number of trained surveyors, surveys and our understanding of this species in the National Park.

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There is a freshness and at times a undefineable fragrance to the air at high altitude in the Pennines. Joan E. Duncan & R.W.Robson

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