For an impatient herpetologist it was good to have night-time temperatures of 6 C and to get out into the rain last night to view great crested newts in some of the ponds close to ARC Pit, on the Dungeness RSPB reserve. 26 animals were present in one of the ponds, the males in full breeding dress, displaying to the females. No sign of any eggs as yet, but it will not be long now, if the weather stays mild.
Rather pleasing also were the numbers of juvenile great crested newts in the water too, indicating that last year was a good breeding season. Walking to the ponds required a degree of care because there were also newts crossing the path, to join their kin in the ponds.
This migration was also apparent at Northiam where numbers of newts in our garden pond have increased over the past few days. Roll-on springtime!