Lincolnshire

Lincolnshire project restores water vole streams

One of the most distinctive habitats in Lincolnshire is being protected by a new environmental project.

Chalk streams in the Lincolnshire Wolds are shallow, clear and oxygen rich, supporting a wide variety of plants and wildlife, including the water vole.

Water vole numbers have crashed due to predation and loss of habitat.

The Lincolnshire Chalk Streams Project is bringing several agencies together to clear clogged streams, manage trees and advise landowners.

Practical advice

The project, hosted by Lincolnshire County Council, brings together The Environment Agency, Lincolnshire Wolds Countryside Service, Natural England, Lincolnshire Wildlife Trust, Anglian Water and the Wild Trout Trust.

Water voles suffered from the introduction of carnivorous mink and the pollution of streams.

Ruth Snelson, project officer for the Lincolnshire Chalk Streams Project, said: "Our conservation work has already resulted in some sightings and we're excited that populations... are being encouraged to return to the area and breed.

"Clearer waters will also lead to healthier populations of fish like trout and brook lamprey, and keen fly fishers are already reporting better fishing further downstream.

"We've been working with landowners and local communities, offering practical advice on how to manage their chalk streams."

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