Protect brownfield or ex-industrial sites in urban areas

How is the evidence assessed?
  • Effectiveness
    not assessed
  • Certainty
    not assessed
  • Harms
    not assessed

Study locations

Key messages

  • One study evaluated the effects of protecting brownfield or ex-industrial sites in urban areas. This study was in the UK.




  • Use (1 study): One study in the UKĀ reported that an ex-industrial site that was protected was occupied by up to four species of reptiles.

About key messages

Key messages provide a descriptive index to studies we have found that test this intervention.

Studies are not directly comparable or of equal value. When making decisions based on this evidence, you should consider factors such as study size, study design, reported metrics and relevance of the study to your situation, rather than simply counting the number of studies that support a particular interpretation.

Supporting evidence from individual studies

  1. A study in 2005 in an area of mixed ponds, grassland and scrub in Peterborough, UK (Langton 2006) found that following protection of an ex-industrial site, the area was occupied by grass snakes Natrix helvetica and common lizards Zootoca vivipara. A total of 87 grass snakes and 76 common lizards were recorded at the site. Authors reported that adders Vipera berus and slow worms Anguis fragilis were also present at the site (no data provided). In the 1940s to the late 1990s, the area was used for clay extraction for brick making, resulting in a landscape characterised by a series of ridges and furrows. In 1995, part of the site was designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, and in 2005 it was designated as a Special Area of Conservation. Authors reported that a range of habitat and species management activities were carried out on the site, including controlling scrub, construction of artificial refuges and releases of grass snakes and common lizards. In 2005, reptile surveys were conducted by placing 90 corrugated iron refugia (1 m2) throughout vegetated locations on the site. Refugia were visited 22 times (roughly weekly visits) and all reptiles were counted.

    Study and other actions tested
Please cite as:

Sainsbury K.A., Morgan W.H., Watson M., Rotem G., Bouskila A., Smith R.K. & Sutherland W.J. (2021) Reptile Conservation: Global Evidence for the Effects of Interventions for reptiles. Conservation Evidence Series Synopsis. University of Cambridge, Cambridge, UK.

Where has this evidence come from?

List of journals searched by synopsis

All the journals searched for all synopses

Reptile Conservation

This Action forms part of the Action Synopsis:

Reptile Conservation
Reptile Conservation

Reptile Conservation - Published 2021

Reptile synopsis

What Works 2021 cover

What Works in Conservation

What Works in Conservation provides expert assessments of the effectiveness of actions, based on summarised evidence, in synopses. Subjects covered so far include amphibians, birds, mammals, forests, peatland and control of freshwater invasive species. More are in progress.

More aboutĀ What Works in Conservation

Download free PDF or purchase
The Conservation Evidence Journal

The Conservation Evidence Journal

An online, free to publish in, open-access journal publishing results from research and projects that test the effectiveness of conservation actions.

Read the latest volume: Volume 21

Go to the CE Journal

Discover more on our blog

Our blog contains the latest news and updates from the Conservation Evidence team, the Conservation Evidence Journal, and our global partners in evidence-based conservation.

Who uses Conservation Evidence?

Meet some of the evidence champions

Endangered Landscape ProgrammeRed List Champion - Arc Kent Wildlife Trust The Rufford Foundation Save the Frogs - Ghana Mauritian Wildlife Supporting Conservation Leaders
Sustainability Dashboard National Biodiversity Network Frog Life The international journey of Conservation - Oryx Cool Farm Alliance UNEP AWFA Bat Conservation InternationalPeople trust for endangered species Vincet Wildlife Trust