WELL, I said to myself as I surveyed the carnage on a relatively traffic-free lane in Boscombe last week, it certainly wasn’t to end up like this.

Literally every six inches or so, our dogwalking wellies were stepping over another pathetic little corpse flattened on the tarmac.

The answer to my question, of course, is that spring is in the air, though no longer, sadly, in the little legs of these particular specimens It’s breeding time, and the urge to reach their traditional mating grounds is an irresistible one, pre-dating the invention of the motor car.

Result: predictable, and very sad.

Constructing little toad tunnels under busy carriageways is one solution, particularly popular elsewhere in Europe.

‘Toad crossing patrols’, manned by volunteers in hi-vis tabards, armed with torches and buckets, are a more British response to the problem.

The Froglife charity’s website lists patrols operating in this area, along with contact details for those inclined to help. Little Durnford, Breamore Marsh and Ringwood appear to be the nearest ones that are currently active, but do tell me if there are others.

Any Boscombe folk thinking of starting one?

I hate the word ‘roadkill’. It has a callous ring to it, and I wouldn’t mind betting it originated in America.

But that’s what I’ve been seeing everywhere this week, so it’s on my mind.

Growing up in Essex, I never saw a badger, dead or alive. Yet driving home via Dorchester and Blandford, I’ve been amazed by the number of dead ones on the roadsides.

Cynics claim that many (‘protected’ by law except when they’re being culled!) are in fact shot by farmers and dumped on verges to make it look like they were run over.

I have no idea.

On a more positive environmental note, I intend to get involved in the Great British Spring Clean this weekend.

I say this not to illustrate how wonderful I am, but to encourage more people to take part.

Picking up litter in Salisbury may not sound like a fun way to spend a hard-earned day off, particularly when you know some thicko will drop a crisp packet on the pavement or chuck a plastic water bottle out of a car window immediately afterwards.

But when I’ve made a big effort to clean the house (OK, not that often!), I’m much more inclined to keep it looking tidy, for a while at least.

Perhaps we need to develop a similar sense of ownership of our public spaces.

To join in, phone Karen Linaker on 01722 434697 or email Karen.linaker@wiltshire.gov.uk.