Bid to preserve native crayfish
A RESCUE mission is underway to prevent an endangered species disappearing from the Suffolk coast.The native white-clawed crayfish used to be a common sight in Britain's rivers but have been losing out in the last few decades to more aggressive invasive species such as signal crayfish from America.
A RESCUE mission is underway to prevent an endangered species disappearing from the Suffolk coast.
The native white-clawed crayfish used to be a common sight in Britain's rivers but have been losing out in the last few decades to more aggressive invasive species such as signal crayfish from America.
But a new project is aiming to prevent the crustaceans from being wiped out by developing an innovative crayfish 'ark'.
A watery haven has already been chosen for the crayfish - 50 of which were rescued from a threatened population and taken there this week.
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In time, it is hoped that the transferred animals will breed and grow in number.
Monitoring will be carried out every year for the next three years to see how they are doing and a hunt has already started for another refuge site.
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Will Akast, from the Environment Agency, said: 'It feels really good to be doing something positive for native crayfish.
'Sitting back and watching them gradually disappear is so depressing.
'Maybe in time a way will be found, such as biological control, to eradicate the invaders and then white-claws may again take their place in our rivers.'
If anyone has a large pond, lake or gravel pit and would like it to be considered as an ark site, contact the Environment Agency on 08708 506 506.