About Us

The Rossett Local Nature Reserve committee looks after the area inhabited by the Great Crested Newt. On this site we have our latest news and pictures

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Come along and help out with our volunteer days, make a difference in your local community. Check out our calendar of events.

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About The Great Crested Newt

These newts have dark grey-brown backs and flanks, and are covered with darker-coloured spots so they appear almost black. Their undersides are either yellow- or orange-coloured and are covered in large, black blotches, which have a unique pattern in each individual.

Males can be distinguished from females by the presence of a jagged crest during the breeding season. This runs along their backs, then a separate smoother-edged crest runs above and below their tails (in some other species of newts, the crest along the back is continuous with the tail crest). They also have a silver-grey stripe that runs along the tail.

Females lack a crest, but have a yellow-orange stripe along the lower edge of their tails and often a marked orange stripe along the top of their lower backs and tails. The great crested newt is known for the long jagged crest on its back. Great crested newts are a protected and endangered species.

Since the 1940s, populations of northern crested newts have declined in most of Europe due to loss of habitat. In England, Wales, and Scotland, it is a protected species under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, and under equivalent legislation in Northern Ireland. It is also a European Protected Species and as such it has additional protection in the UK under Regulation 39 of the Conservation (Natural Habitats etc.) Regulations 1994 (the Habitats Regulations), as amended by the Conservation (Natural Habitats, &c.) (Amendment) Regulations 2007.

  • Large Species

    Females can measure up to 16 cm and are larger than males, which measure 14 to 15 cm long.

  • Protected Species

    It is an offence to intentionally kill, injure or take a great crested newt or to harm its habitat

  • Hibernate

    Throughout October to March, they hibernate under logs and stones or in the mud at the bottom of their breeding ponds. The newts normally return to the same breeding site each year

  • Long Life

    Great Crested Newts can live up to 27 years, though up to 10 years is more common.