If you would like to do something positive for wildlife without having to leave your home, People’s Trust for Endangered Species (PTES) is calling for volunteers to take part in its annual Living with Mammals survey which launched this week.
Many of Britain’s mammals are under threat, but recording sightings from your garden, balcony or window – including the signs they leave behind, such as footprints or droppings – can help conservationists protect their future.
Although many species are found across the country, PTES is particularly interested to hear from those living in Scotland and northern England, and in places where fewer people live.
David Wembridge, Mammal Surveys Coordinator at PTES, explains: “Living with Mammals is something positive we can do at a difficult time and while we all stay in, we hope people will take the opportunity to appreciate their wild neighbours.
People across the country are helping to build an extraordinary picture of how our wildlife is changing, but with fewer records in some areas, the picture is less clear. For a species like hedgehogs, that are still widespread but whose numbers have been going down, it’s as important to get as good an idea of how they’re doing in Scotland, say, as elsewhere, where we have more records.”
David continues: “And for species whose strongholds are in the north, these might be the majority of records we receive. Three-quarters of red squirrels, for example, and almost all pine martens, in Britain are found in Scotland. So, we’re keen to hear from anyone living there or in the north of England. Red squirrels are still present in a few parts of England, such as along the Formby Coast and around Newcastle, but elsewhere they are rarely seen.”
Living with Mammals would like volunteers to record sightings of wild mammals each week, from hedgehogs and hares to roe deer and rabbits, and report their findings online at www.ptes.org/LwM. PTES would also love to see your mammal photos – and so would we – on social media using the hashtag #LivingWithMammals and #dscvranimals.