Restore Eroded Habitat to Save Water Vole from Extinction

Originally published on September 23, 2014, at

Target: David Cameron, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom

Goal: Stop the dramatic decrease in water vole populations by recreating their destroyed habitats

Within the last 50 years, the water vole population in the U.K. has dropped by approximately 95 percent. The water vole is a semi-aquatic small mammal that resembles a rat. Water vole habitats have been deteriorating due to irrigation, watercourse management, and erosion. By recreating the lost habitats, the British government can give the water vole a chance to step away from the edge of extinction.

Fifty years ago, roughly eight million water voles populated the riverbanks and streams of the U.K. Their population has rapidly dropped to less than 200,000 water voles today. The leading cause is the rampant destruction of their breeding grounds and habitats. Unable to hide from predators or protect their young, the water vole population is dramatically decreasing.

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