Herpetofauna & others…

Having grown up on the dry Yorkshire Wolds, and also having a home without a wildlife pond or any nearby open water, my encounters with amphibians has been largely limited to just the odd Common Frog in the darker and damper corners of the garden. As a result I am largely ignorant of these rather intriguing animals, though hopefully one day I may be in a position to put this right and learn more about their curious life cycles. Hopefully this will be sooner rather than later.

AMPHIBIA

Salamandridae

Smooth Newt (Lissotriton vulgaris)

Ranidae

Common Frog (Rana temporaria)

Bufonidae

Common Toad (Bufo bufo)
Natterjack Toad (Bufo Epidalea calamita)


As with amphibians, my knowledge of reptiles is very limited and restricted, the Yorkshire Wolds not being home to a particularly large diversity of these cold-blooded organisms. However the odd Grass Snake is encountered in the warmer months, and nearby nature reserves may bring the odd Lizard sighting too, though it has only been in the last couple of years that I have begun to see more reptiles, the North York Moors hosting much larger populations of lizards and snakes compared to back home. Adders are particularly common up on the moorlands and these venomous but rarely aggressive snakes are always good to see whilst out and about exploring the local countryside.

REPTILIA

Colubridae

Grass Snake (Natrix natrix)

Viperidae

Adder (Vipera berus)

Lacertidae

Common Lizard (Zootoca vivipara)

Anguidae

Slow-worm (Anguis fragilis)

Emydidae

Red-eared Terapins (Trachemys scripta elegans)


I am not a fisherman, and whilst I did enjoy a flirtation with the past-time during my early teens, I have always preferred to simply watch and observe nature rather than actually pursue it for the thrill of the catch. As a result I am pretty ignorant of the freshwater fish which dwell locally, though past experiences and the occasional chat with fishermen has helped to illuminate my knowledge to a limited degree, the nearby river Hull hosting a good variety of river creatures. Our new cottage up in the Moors is also beside a river (the Murk Esk) and this has also brought some new chances to observe river life, leaping salmon and trout often being seen from the comfort of our riverbank home.

Cyprinidae

Common Carp (Cyprinus carpio)
Roach (Rutilus rutilus)
Rudd (Scardinius erythropthalmus)
Chub (Squalius cephalus)
Minnow (Phoxinus phoxinus)

Percidae

Perch (Perca fluviatilis)

Esocidae

Pike (Esox lucius)

Salmonidae

Atlantic Salmon (Salmo salar)
Brown Trout (Salmo trutta)

Gasterosteidae

Three-spined Stickleback (Gasterosteus aculeatus)