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Animal Welfare: Squirrels and Toads

Volume 697: debated on Monday 17 December 2007

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What action Natural England is taking to protect red squirrels and natterjack toads on the north-west Merseyside coast. [HL774]

Natural England is working to safeguard the long-term future of red squirrels and natterjack toads by recognising and protecting the Sefton coast as a Site of Special Scientific Interest, Special Area of Conservation and international wetland (Ramsar) site. Also by working with the other landowners on the coast, through the Sefton Coast Partnership (SCP), it helps to manage these habitats and species, namely through:

Working with the SCP in the recent production of a nature conservation and biodiversity strategy.

Supporting the Mersey Community Forest with its initiatives to promote woodland to the benefit of red squirrel populations.

Utilising environmental stewardship grants to promote positive management for a wide range of species and habitats.

Providing advice to other landowners on the management of their land for wildlife.

Contributing funding and technical expertise to the North Merseyside Biodiversity Partnership to deliver its local biodiversity action plan. This includes action plans for both the red squirrel and natterjack toad with specific actions to conserve these species.

Contributing funding and technical expertise to the North Merseyside ‘Biobank' Local Record Centre which aims to store species distribution records across North Merseyside.

Managing the two national nature reserves (Ainsdale Sand Dunes and Cabin Hill) to support their populations of the red squirrel and natterjack toad.