Heathland Biodiversity - Taken from the Hampshire County Council website and adapted.
Reptiles and amphibians
Heathlands are the most important areas in the UK for reptiles. The heaths provide warm, open areas for basking and egg laying and are a great source of invertebrate food. Amphibians make their home in damper areas and need open water to lay their eggs in.
Smooth snakes kill their prey of lizards or small mammals by constricting them in coils of its body. They live among mature heather plants and bask in the sun entwined in the stems. Smooth snakes are the UK’s rarest reptile and are mainly found on heathlands in Hampshire, Surrey and Dorset.
Natterjack toads are smaller than common toads with shorter legs, and have a distinctive yellow stripe along their back. They require warm, shallow pools in which to lay their strings of eggs and sandy banks in which to burrow over winter. They hunt prey on short turf or bare ground.
Sand lizards are so-called because they rely upon the sandy conditions found on heathlands or sand dunes. They lay their eggs in patches of bare sand where they are able to develop in the warmth. During the breeding season, April and May, the males have bright green flanks to attract a mate.
If Hampshire County Council would like this content removing please contact our webmaster and we will happily remove it.