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Action Plan:  Species
Reptiles, Amphibians and Fish
Grass Snake (Natrix natrix)
UK Lead Organisation:

County Lead Organisation:
  • To maintain the current existing populations within Staffordshire.
  • To increase the population within Staffordshire at sites where they are known to exist.


  • Include specific targets for the restoration and recreation of lowland wet grassland, wet woodland, pools and rivers within the LEAP process. (EA) 
  • When developing Capital Flood Defence Schemes, consider the use of flood plain grassland as natural flood storage and seek to re-designate as 'washland'. (EA)
  • Ensure any examples of sites containing populations of this species and that meet the required criteria are given SBI status. (SBI Grading Committee)
  • Under Schedule 5 of the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, the grass snake is protected from intentional killing or injury, and from sale of any live or dead specimens.
  • The Berne Convention lists the grass snake under Appendix III.
Management, Monitoring, Research and Survey
  • Seek to encourage landowners to appropriately manage sites important for grass snakes. (SWT)
  • Ensure effective management agreements, covering agricultural practices and water level management, are in place on all SSSIs which formerly, currently, or have the potential to, support grass snakes. (NE)
  • Seek to restore existing and future gravel pits in the Trent-Tame floodplain to wet grassland, ponds and other habitats suitable for grass snakes. (Mineral Companies, CRP)
  • Promote good practice (i.e. retention of vegetation piles and bare ground basking sites) and seek to enhance habitat conditions for grass snakes during routine maintenance of drainage infrastructure. (EA, Sow & Penk IDB)
  • Carry out management work for grass snakes in gardens and landholdings within grass snake strongholds e.g. Staffordshire Moorlands. (Landowners)
  • Advise landowners on appropriate ways to manage suitable sites for grass snakes. (SWT)
  • Increase species awareness for the public and landowners through education, promotion and events. (SBAP Partnership)
Futher Information
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