NPWS Natterjack Toad Scheme

A major new scheme, aimed at getting farmers involved in natterjack toad conservation by digging ponds, has been launched by NPWS. The programme has an ambitious target of reinstating the natterjack toad around Castlemaine Harbour and along the coastal strip west of Castlegregory on the Dingle peninsula. Farmers will enter a 5 year agreement with NPWS and receive annual payments related to the number of ponds they dig. Ponds will have to be dug in the first year of the agreement, thereafter payments will be for maintaining the ponds (e.g. through hand clearance of vegetation) and the surrounding sward (through grazing) in a suitable condition for natterjacks. The rate of payments are being viewed favourably by the local community - €500 will be paid for the first two ponds in each hectare - and it hoped that there will be considerable take up of the scheme and consequent benefits for the toads over the coming years.

Read more Details of REPS4 Toad option PDF icon [548KB]

You can read about the natterjack toad here: Natterjack Toad leaflet PDF icon [721KB]

Natterjack toad

Natterjack toad (Bufo calamita)

(Photo: NPWS)

New natterjack toad pond

New natterjack toad pond

(Photo: NPWS)

Update: January 2009

There has been an encouraging take up for the scheme. In the first year of the programme (2008), 25 farmers joined and 49 new ponds were dug for the natterjack toad. 10 more farmers are expected to join in 2009, bringing the total number of new breeding sites to 69.