Coventry & Warwickshire

Dormice reintroduced in Warwickshire wood

Dormice are being reintroduced in part of Warwickshire later in a bid to boost numbers of the endangered species.

The mammals, once widespread across Britain, have seen a 40% decline in the last 20 years, the People's Trust for Endangered Species (PTES) said.

Nida Al-Fulaij from the conservation charity said the animals were now "rare and vulnerable to extinction".

Some 34 captive-bred dormice are due to be released into a private woodland in the county.

The location, which is being kept a secret to protect the animals, has been chosen because of limited human access to the site and the mix of tree species and other habitats, PTES said.

The woodland is also in an area historically populated by dormice, but which have since died out.

The dormice will be introduced in pairs to encourage them to establish colonies.

PTES said they would be gradually acclimatised to their new habitat over a two-week period, and a long-term monitoring programme would be set up to check on their progress.

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