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GBR Press: Homes plan put on hold after child finds a newt

This is a Press Information page entitled GBR Press: Homes plan put on hold after child finds a newt within the Press / News Items section of Caudata.org --- EVENING TELEGRAPH (Peterborough, UK) 25 July 08 Homes plan put on hold after child finds a newt (Jonny Muir) Ecology experts are investigating reports that ...

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Old 29th July 2008   #1 (permalink)
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Default GBR Press: Homes plan put on hold after child finds a newt

EVENING TELEGRAPH (Peterborough, UK) 25 July 08 Homes plan put on hold after child finds a newt (Jonny Muir)
Ecology experts are investigating reports that a protected species of newt has colonised land earmarked for 150 homes.
Peterborough City Council has submitted plans to build the homes on former John Mansfield School playing fields, off Poplar Avenue, in Dogsthorpe, Peterborough.
But following the discovery of what is believed to be a great crested newt, Dogsthorpe councillor Adrian Miners believes the authority's house-building proposal may have to be "re-assessed".
Because great crested newts are a protected species, the amphibians would have to be removed prior to the start of any building work.
The find has prompted the city council to commission ecological consultants to investigate the possibility that a colony could be living on the site.
The newt was spotted in long grass, captured and taken home by a child. When she showed her father, who has worked on housing projects in the Orton township where amphibians have been found, he identified the creature as a great crested newt. It was later returned to the playing field.
Cllr Miners said: "At this stage we don't know if there is one newt on the site or a colony. Depending on what is found, plans for the site may have to be re-assessed."
Fellow Dogsthorpe councillor Bella Saltmarsh said: "We must wait to see what is found, but I'm pleased that the council is taking the discovery seriously."
Council wildlife officer Brian Armstrong said: "This site is the subject of a current planning application for redevelopment by the city council's strategic property department.
"In preparing the planning application, the site was professionally assessed by ecological consultants.
"The assessment, carried out in September 2006, concluded that the site did not contain habitat suitable to support protected amphibians including great crested newts.
"The strategic property department is commissioning ecological consultants to follow up on the reported finding of a great crested newt and to establish if further survey work is required."
In the UK, great crested newt habitats have diminished due to pressure on land caused by population growth and agricultural expansion.
It is an offence to intentionally kill, injure or take a great crested newt.
http://www.peterboroughtoday.co.uk/n...old.4323951.jp



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