What Lies Under A Piece of Bark

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Lifting a piece of bark in a garden border, the last thing I expected to find was a delightful Smooth Newt (Lissotriton vulgaris).

It remained where it was, frozen to the spot. I hadn’t got my camera, so I gently placed the bark back and went into the house to get my equipment. Thankfully, when I got back and lifted the bark a second time, he was still there.

It is the first time I have seen a Smooth Newt here, in fact, surpisingly, the first time since I was a boy back home in the 1970s., so this was quite an exciting find for me.

I found him at the opposite end of the garden to where my pond is located, but after their spring mating sessions in ponds they live the rest of the year away from water, hiding under rocks and logs in woodland, hedgerows or gardens, venturing out only at night to hunt inveretbrates.

The Smooth Newt is one of three native species to be found in the UK, and it is the commonest and the most frequently encountered of them all.

26 thoughts on “What Lies Under A Piece of Bark

  1. Don’t you love surprises 😃😃. Nice catch, I think maybe once I have found a Newt in the Lowcountry. Other species… as I type this Ellen is reciting a play by play as three Anole run along the screen in my back porch. I do evict any Skinks found. Sneaky creepy little buggers.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. After thinking, “I hope there aren’t any witches in your neighborhood,” I began wondering about the famous ‘recipe’ from Macbeth. You know: “Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble. Fillet of a fenny snake, in the cauldron boil and bake; Eye of newt and toe of frog…” I discovered that many of the ingredients the witches used actually are from plants; ‘eye of newt’ was another name for mustard seed.

    In any event, it certainly was a fun find. Now I need to find a newt, so I can share my new-found information!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have learned something new today … I didn’t realise ‘eye of newt’ was another name for a mustard seed. Perhaps we need to try and taste that recipe and it might not be so bad as it really sounds 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Lovely photos of an interesting little species. People often mistake them for lizards and I suppose the general shape does resemble a common lizard, but of course they are very distinctive once you start looking closer.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Paul! You are lucky! I only have a small pond and have had frogs breeding in there, but never noticed any newts – and you have 2 species! 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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