I finally saw my first wild slow worm in the UK

Ever since I first learned of the existence of adders and other wild reptiles in the UK, I’ve wanted to find one and see it in person

I’ve made a number of trips to various locations around the country where they’re supposed to be regularly spotted, and they’ve all turned out fruitless.

I still haven’t found my elusive adders, but I did accidentally stumble across a slow worm while out location scouting a couple of days ago (almost literally), marking my first discovery of a wild reptile in the UK.

When I’m out location scouting with no expectation of getting any images other than to simply document the location, I tend to leave my camera gear in the car or at home.

Normally I just use my iPhone to get shots of the location, all nicely geotagged allowing me to be able to easily find the place again in the future.

I didn’t even know this area had reptiles, and my first indication was only after we’d finished looking around the location we’d come to see.

We were heading back along the path to the car as I saw something just out of the edge of my eye wriggling on the ground almost underfoot thinking “Holy shit! That’s a big worm!”


A split second later, after looking down I could see that it was a reptile, sans legs, about 12-14″ long, slithering across the path, then stopping to soak up the sun.

While immediately disappointed that I didn’t have a DSLR and my 105mm Macro lens with me, I soon realised that this would be an excellent time to test out the 4K video on my new iPhone SE.

Shortly after shooting this clip, I got one or two more snaps, and then he was gone.

While my quest for adders continues, I’m so grateful to have finally seen a wild reptile in the UK, and especially somewhere so close to home.

I’m also very glad I spotted this thing wriggling on the ground below me before I accidentally stood on him!


I think I’ll have to visit this location a lot more often if this summer ends up being as warm and sunny as the current weather might suggest.