A morning spent in search of our region’s native reptiles

Michael Coates News, Revealing Reptiles


On a foggy damp Saturday morning an optimistic group met up with Revealing Reptiles Project Officer, John Grundy and Education & Engagement Senior Officer, Kirsty Pollard to venture out on to the moors of Durham in search of our region’s four native reptiles. Although the weather was just starting to clear we didn’t expect to see much. It wasn’t long before John’s eagle eyes honed in on an adder hiding amongst the decaying bracken. Here is a picture of the area, for those who weren’t there, to serve as a an illustration of how well camouflaged adders are and how difficult they can be to spot;

Can you spot the adder?

The photo below is an enlarged version of the adder hiding amidst the bracken – It was more difficult than ‘Where’s Wally’.

The damp conditions were, however, perfect for a passing frog (an amphibian rather than a reptile) .

The weather was better suited to amphibians than reptiles

Our thanks to John and Kirsty for a great morning, all who attended had a truly memorable day. After the event the newly trained reptile surveyors went to the local pub only to be turned away as it wasn’t open! Luckily the local youth hostel was open and served tea and coffee. I highly recommend booking on to one of the upcoming Revealing Reptile Training Days – it’s certainly worth it!

Michael Coates
Trustee at Durham Wildlife Trust

Michael volunteers as a Trustee for Durham Wildlife, bringing his wealth of experience from the world of management and leadership development. When he’s not developing future leaders in his role at Protostar Leadership Development, Michael enjoys getting out and experiencing the wonderful wildlife our region has to offer. He particularly likes being amongst trees and hopes to encourage others to love and conserve our local countryside. Michael takes every opportunity to develop his knowledge of wildlife and regularly attends Durham Wildlife Trust’s events and training days.