Trusts Join Forces to Save One of Britain's Rarely Seen Rodents
Trusts join forces to save one of Britain's rarely seen rodents
A major project has been launched to stop the extinction of one of the world's smallest and shyest endangered mammals.
The joint conservation initiative by six English county wildlife trusts aims to increase general knowledge and understanding of the dormouse and to provide habitats conducive to its protection.
Easily recognised by its thick furry tail, bright golden brown fur and shiny black eyes, the dormouse has disappeared from seven counties in the UK in the past century.
It has all but vanished from the northern regions, with only struggling populations found in Wales, the South-east and South-west of England.
Destruction of the dormouse's woodland habitat and changes in woodland management practice have led to the mammal's demise.
Director-general of the Wildlife Trusts, Dr Simon Lyster was cautiously optimistic about the mammal's future: "The supreme vulnerability of dormice to changes in environment and climate underlines the importance of careful management of our woodlands to give them the best possible chance. …