Skip to content

Activities in Hövelhof – saving the habitat of the garlic toad in cooperation with the “Biologische Station Senne”

As part of the Erasmus+ project, the students worked on a project contributing to the protection of the garlic or spadefoot toad.

(Bildquellen: Bild 1:,

Bild 2:

The problem: The spadefoot toad is a native species of frogs. As a land habitat she prefers open areas with loose soil (preferably sandy soil) near suitablespawning waters. Suitable spawning waters should be partially shaded to sunny, do not dry out in summer and water plants to attach the spawning linesexhibit. The spadefoot toad is considered “endangered” nationwide. In NRW it is called “classified as threatened with extinction”. The problem for the species is, among other things, the loss of suitable terrestrial habitats and spawning waters as well as their early drying out.
The measures:  About the loss of valuable natural areas and the loss of biological diversity to counteract this, the states of North Rhine-Westphalia and Lower Saxony are cooperating on this EU-funded LIFE integrated project “Atlantic Sands”. At thisproject, concrete measures are implemented to maintain the conservation status of 15 habitat types and 10 focus species, including the common spadefoot toadTo improve habitat optimization and creation. As part of the LIFE projectwas in the nature reserve (NSG) “Langenbergteich” (Paderborn city, Paderborn district) in In the past, the already existing heath pond was partially desludged.In addition, a dune was cleared. On this is continuously renewed growth of woodremoved by hand. In addition, large willow bushes and some places on the south side cleared. Furthermore, on a grassland area south of the pondProtected water bodies created. In addition, as part of the LIFE project 2018 in 2Phases first metamorphic and then large tadpoles of the spadefoot spadefoot againarea settled. In order to check the success of the resettlement, a survey was carried out in 2019 Control of spadefoot toads returning to the area.
What should we do? Due to the increasing dry periods in summer, it is necessary at the Heideweiher Due to the increasing dry periods in summer, it is necessary at the Heideweiher to deepen some places to prevent the water body from drying out prematurely. This measure is intended to ensure that the NSG is permanently considered suitable to preserve the habitat of the common spadefoot toad. The work can be done by the students in be taken over as part of a project day. So that the students can understand the problem and Being able to understand realities in the area is first an introduction by the Biological station planned in the biological station and on site. subsequently have students the opportunity to do practical work.(uproot or dig up trees)
The worsening living conditions for the spadefoot toad are a direct consequence of the climatic events of the last summers. The garlic toad belongs with it certainly among the “losers” of climate change. But with targeted measures, attempts are being made to counteract this development and also to preserve their living space in NRW in the future.

There is no bad weather! Recharging before starting the work!
Getting instructions!
Habitat of the garlic toad (or spadefoot toad), explanations by F. Ahnfeld (Biolog. Station Senne)
“Teamwork makes the dream work”
The pond as habitat of the toad has to be freed of tree saplings