Photographs by Jules Howard
All our top tips and information for Toad Patrollers is in our Toad Patrol Pack.
- Download the Toad Patrol Pack (for Patrollers) / Toad Patrol Pack (for Managers) for reference or to distribute to volunteers.
Toad Patroller Checklist
As the run-up to the migration season begins, you might find this checklist useful to make sure you’re adequately prepared!
1. It’s important to get in touch with all your regular Patrollers from previous years and advertise for new ones if necessary. There are posters available for you to display in local shops / community centres / etc. These can be found at the back of the Toad Patrol Pack.
2. When you hear back from potential Patrollers, find out their availability, experience and get their contact details (daytime and evening).
3. If you do not live particularly near to the crossing site, try and find a local person (e.g. a dog walker, or someone who lives or works nearby) who can keep an eye out for toads starting to move – they can then let you know, even if they’re not able to patrol themselves.
4. Arrange for all the Patrollers to visit the site in daylight to familiarise themselves well in advance of the migration season. Perhaps organise an informal meeting (at a local pub or café?) and then use this opportunity to ensure all new patrollers are briefed on their task and understand the recording forms.
5. Ensure everybody has read your Risk Assessment and signed our volunteer declaration form (2017) or ARG UK Volunteer Agreement.
6. Confirm availability of each of your Patrollers – this will help if you want to draw up a rota.
- Please see the Health and Safety section of the Patrol Pack – make sure you carry out a Risk Assessment and get all Patrollers to sign a volunteer declaration form (2017) when they first join your patrol. Each volunteer will only have to complete the form once for each site they patrol on.
- Toad migrations can start anytime between late-January (southwest England) and late-March (northeast England, eastern Scotland) so be sure to check the local weather forecast for the first run of consistently mild (>5°C), wet nights and make sure all Patrollers are prepared. It will help to have someone nearby or who can check the road regularly to inform you when the toads are beginning to move.
- Make sure all volunteers have the means to record their data (even if it’s just a scrap of paper and a pencil!) and that it is collected each night.
- Remember the toads will be most likely to move during or just after appropriate weather so the migration may happen in several ‘waves’.
- Once you have collected all the records, submit your data by filling out and returning the Data Form to Froglife at the end of the season.
Download the Toad Patrol Pack (for Managers) which contains the checklist and all the forms you need.