England’s threatened wildlife to be brought ‘back from the brink’

England’s threatened wildlife to be brought ‘back from the brink’

Sand lizard (Merseyside male)
More than 100 species of England’s most vulnerable wildlife have been thrown a lifeline with £4.6million of National Lottery money.

Back from the Brink is a partnership, led by Natural England, of seven leading UK conservation organisations which will focus on protecting key endangered species such as the grey long-eared bat, pasque flower, sand lizard and Duke of Burgundy butterfly from extinction.

Natural England, Amphibian and Reptile Conservation, Bat Conservation Trust, Buglife, Bumblebee Conservation Trust, Butterfly Conservation, Plantlife, and the Royal Society for the Protection of Birds will work together at sites across England with the sole aim of saving 20 species from extinction and helping another 118 species that are under threat move to a more certain future.

Melanie Hughes, Natural England’s Director of Innovation and Reform, welcomed the news: “We know that people care about the fate of our endangered wildlife, and this programme focuses on inspiring local communities to enjoy and learn about the vulnerable species local to them and across England, and how they can take positive action to improve their habitats.”

[quote=Tom Tew, HLF Trustee]“We think this programme can be a game-changer for wildlife."[/quote]

Tom Tew, HLF Trustee, added: “We think this programme can be a game-changer for wildlife - and it will get thousands of people involved in learning about and protecting some of England’s most endangered species. There is too often a lack of awareness here about the dramatic decline of our native species and if we don’t act soon it will be too late.”

The programme – a key contributor to the Government’s Biodiversity Strategy 2012 - will commence in 2016 and run for four years. It will combine three strands of work, including species conservation on the ground in over 30 places across England, working with landowners, communities, and volunteers, and inspiring people to enjoy and appreciate England’s threatened species.

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