RAUK - Archived Forum - University project on British Reptiles

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University project on British Reptiles:

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Joined: 18 Feb 2011
No. of posts: 1

View other posts by Maney
Posted: 18 Feb 2011
Hey everybody,

My name is Dan and I am a student at the University of
Nottingham where I am studying for an Msc in Biological
photography and imaging. I have had an interest in
reptiles for the last 12 years or so, and I am looking to
do my final project on British reptiles and amphibians.

The project itself is a 50 image and 10,000 word piece
which I would like to focus on a general field guide,
detailing natural habitats, behaviours, identification
etc as well as conservation information. The idea being
to create something informative, interesting and most
importantly, useful in the field (and for people working
in the field).

With this in mind, I would obviously like to photograph
them in the wild and work with people knowledgeable on
the topic. I am very new to this, and as such I am hoping
you guys might be able to point me in the right direction
of people/organizations I should try to get in touch
with? Speaking with people working hands on in the field
would be of particular interest.

I am also keen to ccontribute my skills to help
conservation of British Reptiles, I would love to
contribute imagery to any conservation/awareness
campaigns so if you think you could use me please do!

Thanks in advance,

Senior Member
Joined: 26 Jun 2008
No. of posts: 79

View other posts by Mark_b
Posted: 18 Feb 2011

Hey Dan,

You can find your local amphibian & reptile group here....

http://www.arguk.org/index.php?option=com_mapio&view=map s&id=1&Itemid=16

In terms of your project I wouldn't say a general field guide is needed. The recently released book by Howard Inns pretty much covers everything ... http://www.amazon.co.uk/Britains-Reptiles-Amphibians-Coverin g-Britain/dp/1903657253

It may be more useful to focus your efforts on the local area you are in. Linking in with the your ARG you could use your images to create educational displays, posters etc to be put up at local nature reserves etc. Also creating attractive sighting/record gaining posters that can be printed on weather-proof material and placed in areas that are lacking records. Not sure what are can actually write your thesis about but the basic ID, habitat, behaviours and conservation of our natvie herpetofauna must have been rewitten many times. Maybe you could do some mapping of your newly gained records and talk about the distribution of herpetofauna in your area. Advising where conservation work is needed (with the advise of local arg) and report this to your local council biodiversity unit? Create a easy to read booklet that summarises herps in Nottingham to be given to the public?  Just some quick thoughts

Hope I haven't put a downer on your idea!

Admin Group
Joined: 25 Jan 2003
No. of posts: 2090

View other posts by GemmaJF
Posted: 20 Feb 2011
It might be outside your remit for the project.... but producing an 'outdoor' field guide, say a ring bound flip over booklet with water proof pages could be popular. Both for conservation and also consultancy use. I've always wanted one of these for onsite briefing of both conservation workers and consultancy fieldworkers. One area always poorly covered is the difference in appearance between terrestrial and aquatic stage newts. Even herp fieldworkers can get it wrong in my experience and identify terrestrial stage newts as 'lizards'. A booklet with a page dedicated to each species, larval stage, variations, eggs, juveniles etc etc would be great.

In any case, if you can do a day out in Essex drop me a PM and I'll take you around a local site or two.

Gemma Fairchild, Independent Ecological Consultant
Senior Member
Joined: 05 Dec 2010
No. of posts: 83

View other posts by Scale
Posted: 20 Feb 2011
[QUOTE=GemmaJF] Even herp fieldworkers can get it wrong in
my experience and identify terrestrial stage newts as

In such a case, is it even technically correct to call such
a person a 'herp fieldworker'?
Senior Member
Joined: 05 Dec 2010
No. of posts: 83

View other posts by Scale
Posted: 20 Feb 2011
(Good name, same as my father-in-law)
If you can't find people in the Nottinghamshire ARG and
fancy a trip to Shropshire, i might be able to show you a
thing or two. That's if we're lucky and the devil is

- University project on British Reptiles

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