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Kent Reptile & Amphibian Group Amphibians Palmate Newt (Lissotriton helveticus)

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Palmate Newt (Lissotriton helveticus)

Male Palmate newt (Triturus helveticus)Female Palmate newt (Triturus helveticus)Recorded Palmate Newt Distribution in Kent

The other of the two small newt species found in Kent, the palmate is less widespread than the smooth newt.

With a greater tolerance of acidic ponds, it might be expected that the palmate newt would be more likely to be found in woodland habitats than the otherwise ecologically similar smooth newt.

Interestingly in Kent the distribution of the palmate newt is largely associated with ancient woodland, mirroring the historical extent of woodland across the county.

Though female palmate and smooth newts can be tricky to distinguish it is a little easier to identify males. The male palmate newt develops only a very low crest, the smooth newt has a much more developed undulating crest. The tail crest of the palmate newt ends abruptly whilst that of the smooth newt is tapering. Palmate males also have a characteristic filament at the end of the tail and develop black fringes to the toes of the hind feet in the breeding season.