<--! --!>

No newts in Louth or Tipperary according to survey

Smooth Newt by Andrew KellyThe Irish Wildlife Trust (IWT) has published the results of its National Newt Survey for 2012, and reveals that to-date no newts have been recorded from Counties Louth or Tipperary.

2012 was the third year of the survey, which is supported by Dublin Zoo, Fota Wildlife Park and The Heritage Council and the IWT is Gradually building a comprehensive picture of  the smooth newt (Lissotriton vulgaris) in Ireland, including details of its distribution and preferred habitats.

The smooth newt is one of only three amphibian species  in Ireland, along with the common frog and natterjack toad, and is considered a native species. According to the IWT the newt has been historically under-recorded, so for 2012 they focused efforts on counties where they’d received few or no previous records. Volunteers were trained  in newt survey techniques in Wexford, Mayo, Louth, Clare, Laois, Limerick, Kildare and Donegal. People from all over the country also submitted casual records, and these were incorporated into the survey results.

Adding the data for 2012 to records for the previous two years the IWT reveals that newts are widespread across Ireland, but says there are still significant gaps.

Newt distribution Ireland“Can it be that there are really no newts in Louth or Tipperary?” asks IWT Campaigns Officer Pádraic Fogarty. “There are also large areas in counties like Kerry, Mayo and Donegal where we have no confirmation of newt presence. Because the newt has historically been under-recorded it is likely that we still don’t have the full picture. We still have lots to do and are calling on people across Ireland to send us their newt sightings.”

More than half of the records submitted to the IWT cam from garden ponds… highlighting how important these artificial mini-wetlands are to this enigmatic amphibian. Other surprises included Ireland’s first ever alpine newt in Co. Galway — a species more at home on the continent, and likely to be a discarded or escaped pet, and a possible record of the  Rana virus, otherwise known as ‘red-leg disease, from County Kildare — a disease that has decimated amphibian populations elsewhere in the world.

The IWT will be continuing its national newt survey in 2013, and will announcing more details of the survey and training days soon via its website and Facebook page.

For more information on the IWT’s newt survey click on the link or contact newts@iwt.ie.

Photo Credit: © All Rights Reserved Andrew Kelly Photography — used with permission as per IWT Press Release

Calvin Jones About Calvin Jones

Calvin Jones is a freelance writer, author, birder and lifelong wildlife enthusiast. He is founder and managing editor of IrelandsWildlife.com. He lives in West Cork, and spends as much time as possible getting closer to Ireland's wildlife, and sharing it with others.

Comments

  1. Gerry Cullen says:

    When I worked in security I was based in MSD on the Clonmel road. Five years ago the reed beds at the back of the plant contained hundreds of breeding pairs of frogs along with several breeding pairs of Newts, I would be supprised if this situtation has changed

  2. Mizzy Wonder says:

    I just found one… In Louth…

Trackbacks

  1. […] notable record, since the Irish Wildlife Trust’s National Newt Survey had received no newt records from Tipperary up to and including 2012. […]

Leave a Reply

Ireland's Wildlife uses cookies to enhance your user experience - by using the site or closing this banner you agree to our use of cookies as outlined in our Privacy policy.
No problem!
x