WATCH: Stunning drone footage of Idle Valley Nature Reserve - where one of England's largest beaver enclosures will be created

A wildlife trust is calling for help from the public to create one of the largest beaver enclosures in England at a Bassetlaw nature reserve.

Wednesday, 10th March 2021, 9:56 am

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust wants to raise £250,000 to support the introduction of beavers, the expansion of its grazing programme with traditional breeds of cattle and other habitat improvements across Idle Valley Nature Reserve, near Retford

Chief executive Paul Wilkinson said: “With its vast open skies and abundant wildlife across wetland, woodland and meadows, the Idle Valley Nature Reserve is by far our most exciting site in terms of its potential for habitat restoration.

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Idle Valley Nature Reserve

"It is already recognised as one of the richest bird-watching sites in the region and we’re determined to make it even wilder and to put it on the map as a truly inspiring wildlife destination.

"By harnessing a natural process, starting with beavers and expanding our conservation grazing programme, we can begin to unlock the site’s true potential.”

The charity had planned to create a minimum of a 13-hectare secure beaver enclosure, but following a visit from renowned beaver reintroduction experts during which they described the site as having ideal conditions for beavers, the charity decided to massively increase the scale of its ambitions.

Whilst many beaver projects have seen the release of just one or two adults, the trust now plans to create one of the largest beaver enclosures in England with space for up to three beaver families and hopes to be ready to welcome at least four beavers later this year.

Mr Wilkinson added: "Bringing beavers back to Nottinghamshire after a 400-year gap will kick-start our efforts to make the site even richer for wildlife and to create a wealth of opportunities for people to see and connect with nature.

"Our efforts to restore nature at the Idle Valley Nature Reserve and beyond have been given tremendous momentum thanks to the support of Severn Trent Water through their Great Big Nature Boost, and with the backing of our supporters and the public we can achieve so much more.”

The charity has also launched an online survey to give people the opportunity to have their say on the plans and to record wildlife sightings.

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