Friday, 4 April 2014

UK wildlife rich grasslands vanishing

April 2014: There has been a dramatic decline in our remaining wildlife-rich grasslands say conservationists putting many species at risk.

“Wildlife-rich grasslands have been in trouble for decades, but our newly collated information shows that the remaining hay meadows and flower-rich pastures are still at risk,” says Stephen Trotter, The Wildlife Trusts’ Director. “We’re seeing an insidious yet catastrophic decline. The pressures are enormous: from development and changes in agricultural practices, to neglect.”

The Wildlife Trusts have been collecting information on the state of valuable grassland sites in England such as ancient meadows, pastures and road verges. They have found that nearly a quarter of wildlife sites have been lost across many counties in the UK, while in the Lake District National Park they found a staggering 183.26 hectares (82 per cent) has been de-selected as Local Wildlife Sites. 

The Wildlife Trusts are calling for a full review of existing protection for environmentally important grasslands. They are asking the Government to:

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