The Great Crested Newt is a protected species that is common throughout England and Wales and was brought up as a possible reason to stop Fi.Fest from taking place. However, after many studies, it was found the there was no evidence that The Great Crested Newt was at the festival location. Because of all the 'hoo haa' over this issue, we at Fi.Fest decided to adopt the newt as a kind of mascot. We decided to name him Bert, and he even has his own bar named after him!  Bert is present on most of the festival's artwork and advertising, you may have to search for him though!

Bert & Fi.Fest​


Newts are amphibians, breeding in ponds during the spring and spending most of the rest of the year feeding on invertebrates in woodland, hedgerows, marshes and tussocky grassland. They hibernate underground, among tree roots and in old walls. The UK's populations of the Great Crested Newt are internationally important.

How to identify

Our biggest newt, the Great Crested Newt is almost black in colour, with spotted flanks and a striking, orange belly. It has warty skin and males have a long, wavy crest along the body and tail during the breeding season.


Widespread across lowland England and Wales.


Did you know?

Individual Great Crested Newts can be identified by looking at their bellies as the pattern of black spots they each sport is as unique as a fingerprint. As well as their distinctive crests, males have an extravagant courtship display to woo females: they stand on their front legs, arch their back and wave their tail around as if they are dancing.