Surrey Toad Crossings

What is a toad-crossing ?

Toads spend the majority their year on land, in woodland, hedgerows and gardens. They are nocturnal creatures, and hibernate each winter in frost-free undergrowth or holes. Every Spring they must return to the water for reproduction.

Toads have been following this cycle for thousands of years; it is only in the last century that they have encountered significant road traffic during their annual migration.

Every Spring, thousands of toads are accidentally killed as they undertake their night-time crossing of the roads across the United Kingdom. There is strong evidence to suggest that the UK population of toads is decreasing, and although it is unlikely that road deaths are the cause, this risk is certainly now a factor affecting the toad's conservation status.

Toad crossings aim to minimise the number of road deaths, and to reduce the negative impact of the human environment upon these popular amphibians.

What happens at a toad-crossing ?

Common Toads (Bufo bufo) in amplexus, crossing a road.

Toad crossings are manned by volunteers for a few spring nights, every year, in late February or early March, usually following a rainy day. The volunteers use buckets to collect any frogs, toads or newts which attempt to cross roads, and safely transport them to the destination side of the road.

Required equipment includes buckets (for transporting the amphibians), torches for visibility and to find the animals, high-reflective vests (supplied by ARG UK) and a thermos flask filled with hot chocolate, or the drink of your choice !

Each registered crossing has a volunteer organiser, and many crossings have been manned by the same group of people for many years. Although the crossings are only active for a few days per year, they can provide a good basis for a social experience, as most volunteers are local people, that you may not have the chance to meet in daily life.

Recording the number of toads seen is a critical activity as this provides the evidence needed to determine population changes. You can view data from SARG toad-crossing sites by clicking on the site number in the table below.

SARG co-ordinates the volunteer effort across the county that organises, resources and records activities at the following registered Toad-crossing sites:

Click map for interactive pan and zoom map

No.SiteTownGrid Ref.Borough
1Bolder Mere, Old Lane, Wisley LaneWisleyTQ073583Guildford
2Waterloo Pond, Chilworth RoadChilworthTQ042478Guildford
3Bridge RoadCobham 1TQ106595Elmbridge
4HeathfieldCobham 2TQ132602Elmbridge
5Earlswood Lakes, Woodhatch RdReigateTQ271453Reigate & Ban.
6Prune HillEghamTQ000720Runnymede
7Chequers Pond, West End LaneEsherTQ128638Elmbridge
8Ferry LaneSheppertonTQ074663Spelthorne
9Dean RoadGodalmingSU967446Waverley
10Miles's HillHolmbury St. MaryTQ112438Mole Valley
11Littleton LaneLittletonSU981475Guildford
12Marl Pond, Scotts HillOutwoodTQ326452Tandridge
13The Long RoadRowledgeSU830431Waverley
14Shalford Pond, King's RoadShalfordTQ004469Guildford
15Woodhill Lane / Stroud LaneShamley GreenTQ043435Waverley
16Outwood LaneBletchingleyTQ327503Tandridge
17West Drive, Wentworth EstateVirginia WaterSU978669Runnymede
18Scotts Grove RoadWest End 1SU962603Surrey Heath
19Benner LaneWest End 2SU949612Surrey Heath
20Windsor Great Park, Bishopgate RdOld WindsorSU985720Runnymede
21The DriftEast HorsleyTQ096554Guildford
22Christ Church RoadEpsomTQ187609Epsom & Ewell
23Oast RoadOxtedTQ397514Tandridge
24Pennypot LaneChobhamSU958607Surrey Heath
25Hollow LaneAbingerTQ118469Mole Valley
26The Mount, Kings Road plus othersCranleighTQ065388Waverley
27Effingham Common RoadEffinghamTQ110550Guildford
28Wonham Mill, Wonham LaneBetchworthTQ223486Mole Valley
29Salt Box RoadGuildfordSU990530Guildford
30Chandos RoadEghamTQ025715Runnymede
31Peaslake RoadPeaslakeTQ090434Waverley
32Balchins LaneWestcottTQ135485Mole Valley
33Plough LaneEwhurst GreenTQ095395Waverley
34Bletchingley RoadMersthamTQ525305Tandridge

If you are interested with helping out at any of these toad-crossing sites; please contact Danial Winchester, SARG Amphibians Officer on Toad-Crossings@Surrey-ARG.org.uk.

If you are aware of a toad-crossing location, that is not listed above, and believe it should be considered as an official crossing site: please download this form and submit it to the address listed.