In June, twenty endangered water voles were successfully released into Yorkshire Wildlife Trust’s Potteric Carr nature reserve; a stunning wetland habitat with pockets of woodland and wildflower meadows in Doncaster. The water voles were rescued from a collapsed road side ditch last autumn and carefully captured under licence from Natural England. Prior to their release at Potteric Carr they spent the winter in a special water vole hotel.
Potteric Carr’s mosaic of rich wetland made it the perfect choice for the release. New habitat, including a section of ditch, was created, and the site was landscaped and planted to provide deep water and burrowing banks for the voles’ shelter, cover and food. Potteric Carr’s new residents now live safely in the reedbeds, making rugby ball shaped nests out of old reed stems.
Jim Horsfall, Reserves Officer for South Yorkshire said: “We were delighted to offer a home for rare water voles, thanks to players of People’s Postcode Lottery, Doncaster Council and Ecus Environmental Consultants, and boost the population at our reserve. The decision to move animals from an existing habitat is never taken lightly but water voles adapt readily to a new site if the conditions are right.”
As one of the lucky recipients of money raised by players of People’s Postcode Lottery, Yorkshire Wildlife Trust has been awarded over £1 million to help protect and restore Yorkshire’s precious wildlife. This money enables the Trust to continue managing over 100 treasured nature reserves right across Yorkshire.