WiredGov reports the Environment Agency recently (15 October 2021) welcomed a new chalk stream strategy to protect ‘England’s rainforests’
The Catchment Based Approach’s Chalk Stream Restoration Group brings together organisations with an interest in chalk stream management, recognising that protection of chalk streams requires everyone to play their part.
The Mail Online reports dolphins living off the coast of Wales that have developed their own ‘Welsh accent’ whistle at higher frequencies than those recorded anywhere else in the world, scientists say. Frequency of clicks used by dolphins are also faster than anywhere else in world.
The New Scientist reports the oak processionary moth (OPM), an invasive species in northern Europe with caterpillars that are toxic to humans and other animals, expanded its range at an increased speed in the years following its arrival in the UK, despite government efforts to contain it.
BBC News reports the UK is one of the world’s most nature-depleted countries – in the bottom 10% globally and last among the G7 group of nations, new data shows. It has an average of about half its biodiversity left, far below the global average of 75%, a study has found. A figure of 90% is considered the “safe limit” to prevent the world from tipping into an “ecological meltdown”, according to researchers.
The assessment was released on the eve of the UN Biodiversity Conference, COP 15, hosted by China, a mega-diverse country with nearly 10% of plant species and 14% of animals on Earth.
The Guardian reportsButterfly Conservation, which counted butterflies and moths between 16 July and 8 August, said the results, released on Thursday, marked the lowest numbers since the Big Butterfly Count started 12 years ago and called for urgent action to be taken.
It is the latest warning sign for butterflies – which, as well as forming a vital part of the food chain, are considered significant indicators of the health of the environment – after decades of decline. Since 1976, 76% of butterflies have declined either in abundance or distribution.
The Mirror reports wolves should be reintroduced into Britain to help fight the climate crisis, according to one of Britain’s leading conservationists. Without Roy Dennis’s efforts, there would be fewer red squirrels, no beavers and no osprey or red kite introductory programmes. And the 81-year-old is showing no signs of retiring.
He explained how we must see the benefit to the whole of society by sharing the countryside with large carnivores again, even if it means farmers could lose the odd sheep, and explained how the extinction crisis can only be addressed with “bigness.”
The BBC report a major new project aims to rewild an area of more than 500,000 acres (202,343ha) in the Highlands. Over a period of 30 years, mountains, hills, glens and forests would be left to natural processes. The area could stretch from Loch Ness, across the central Highlands to Kintail on the north west Highlands coast.
Moray-based charity Trees for Life is working with Rewilding Europe, along with 20 landowners and six organisations on the project. The charity said the initiative followed three years of consultation and its work was continuing towards bring more landowners and communities on board.