France and Belgium visit
I’ve spent the past week on a French exchange with pupils from my school. Being back in France brought back many memories of when I used to study at the University of Perpignan in the south of France. This time we visited many areas of northern France and southern Belgium. I had one afternoon off to go and do some exploring, including spending a few hours in a forested area close to the farm that belongs to a friend. Here I was able to see a few herps such as Common wall lizard (Podarcis muralis), Grass snake (Natrix natrix), Common frog (Rana temporaria), Common toad (Bufo bufo) and Pool frog (Pelophylax lessonae). However, I was mostly searching the woods in the hope of finding a Fire salamander (Salamandra salamandra) but due to the fact that they are not common in this area and that it was quite dry I wasn’t able to find one this time. Around Amiens there is a large wetland area that passes through the city and is connected via canals and waterways. I was pleased to have a guided tour and learn of the abundance of grass snakes and amphibians in the urbanised area of northern France.