The toad colony has grown to about 5,000. (Pic: Duncan Sweeting)
Campaigners fighting to stop a housing development in Suffolk over fears for the UK's biggest urban toad colony have welcomed a move to delay the project.
Members of Ipswich Wildlife Group wanted the borough council to scrap plans for the 200-home complex and create a wildlife sanctuary instead.
The council has said it was delaying the sale of the land, due to wildlife and economic factors.
It plans to monitor the next migration of the toads at Thorington Hall.
The council has planning permission for the development, which lies in the neighbouring Babergh District Council area, and had hoped to sell the 11-acre site to a developer.
Council leader Liz Harsant said falling land prices played a part in the decision to delay the sale, while the campaign by Ipswich Wildlife Group was also a factor.
She said the council would "review what actions to take next summer".
The delay will allow the council to monitor the migration of the 5,000-strong common toad population across Kiln Meadow early next year.
Mrs Harsant said a decision would then be made whether to preserve part of the land as a wildlife reserve.
The toads have won a reprieve
Jen Jousiffe, Ipswich Wildlife Group
She said: "I am hopeful a very good compromise will come out of this."
Jen Jousiffe, a conservation volunteer fighting to save the land, said: "We think it's absolutely important that they do the investigations they've suggested to work out the impact of building on the site.
"We are quite pleased they have taken account of local feelings.
"The toads have won a reprieve."
Wildlife charity Froglife ranked the Kiln Meadow colony as the UK's biggest known urban toad population after volunteers carried 4,400 toads across a nearby road during this year's migration season.