Living Uplands

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The return of 'Ratty'

12th Oct 2020

The sighting of the native water vole has been an all too rare occurrence in the 21st Century. Last year, Living Uplands supported the DWT team looking at data on population and habitat water voles across the Tyne, Wear and Tees rivers' catchments.

While identifying some in the upland areas, the population in the lower areas were considered vulnerable. Loss of suitable habitat and predation from non-native Amercian mink has devastated water vole populations across the UK, and local populations have not fared any better.

The data and research collated was used to develop a strategy to halt the decline and aid recovery of the water vole, of "Ratty", across the Tyne, Wear and Tees. This year, that strategy was the foundation of a successful application to the National Lottery Heritage Fund, with an award of over 500,000 towards the Naturally Native project.

Water Vole - Image Credit: Terry Whittaker / 2020 Vision

Photo image credit: Terry Whittaker / 2020VISION

Living Uplands is looking forward to working with the new project manager and the Naturally Native team at Durham Wildlife Trust, and everyone across the region enjoying and celebrating the return of 'Ratty'.