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Providing evidence to improve practice

Action: Release captive-bred salamanders (including newts) Amphibian Conservation

Key messages

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  • One before-and-after study in Germany found that captive-bred great crested newts and smooth newts released as larvae, juveniles and adults established stable breeding populations.


Supporting evidence from individual studies


A before-and-after study in 1994–2004 of created ponds in wet meadows in the Luhe valley, Germany (Kinne 2004) found that released captive-bred great crested newts Triturus cristatus and smooth newts Triturus vulgaris established stable breeding populations. Newts colonized new ponds within four years. By 2004, they bred in nine of 14 ponds, inhabited all terrestrial habitats (at low densities) and had moved up to 4 km away. Fourteen ponds and many small pools were created and planted with aquatic species, as well fish removal from existing ponds and terrestrial habitat management. Initially, 24 of each species were housed in indoor tanks. In following years, eggs were produced in an outdoor enclosure and then collected and transferred indoors for rearing. Sixty captive-bred great crested newt and 90 smooth newt larvae and juveniles were released into two created ponds annually. In 2000–2004, 5–10 adults were also released into the two ponds.


Referenced papers

Please cite as:

Smith, R.K., Meredith, H. & Sutherland, W.J. (2019) Amphibian Conservation. Pages 9-65 in: W.J. Sutherland, L.V. Dicks, N. Ockendon, S.O. Petrovan & R.K. Smith (eds) What Works in Conservation 2019. Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK.