Slow-worms in the garden

Slow Worms in the Garden

Slow-worms are neither slow nor worms… they’re not even snakes, but actually a legless lizard and whilst gardening this weekend a few made themselves known to me.

I’ve had quite a few in my garden previously so it wasn’t too much of a surprise to find them in the overgrown raised-bed I was digging over which I’m sure has many a treat for them.

Slow Worms in the Garden

They love slugs and worms and I can tell you there are plenty in my garden!

Are they dangerous?

As you can see they’re very gentle and didn’t mind me picking them up so that I could rehome them to a more suitable area of the garden. They may look like snakes but they’re generally harmless.

This adult I found must have been around 30cm in length and will grow to around 50cm in length. It’s the average size of the ones I’ve seen before so I think they must get a lot more stealthy as they mature…. or there’s a lot fewer of them.

Slow-Worm in the Garden

Throughout the afternoon I spotted two adults and this juvenile slow-worm and I like to think they’re enjoying the other undisturbed areas of my garden, munching away at those slugs, and keeping my veg patch a bit safer.

Baby Slow Worms in the Garden
Baby Slow Worms in the Garden

Some interesting slow-worm facts

For one of the more interesting animals to live in our gardens I don’t think people know a huge amount about them so here’s a few facts to “wow” your friends and family with.

  • Average lifespan is up to 30 years
  • The record age was 54 years in captivity
  • Can grow to half a metre in length (50cm)
  • Courtship may last for as long as 10 hours
  • Females incubate the eggs internally, ‘giving birth’ to an average of eight young in summer
  • Unlike snakes they have eyelids, a flat forked tongue and can drop their tail to escape from a predator.
Tags from the story

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.