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This Week in Biodiversity News – 2nd August 2021

Hana Ketley
Hana Ketley

A new conservation tool has been launched by the IUCN that aims to help species ‘thrive, not just survive’. This tool will measure how close a species is to recovering its original population size, rather than focusing on how close the species is to extinction. This hopes to highlight conservation achievements as well as increase ambition for long-term species recovery.

Livestock has been returned to Studland Bay to help with the restoration of sand dunes. In Dorset, a herd of 10 grazing cattle managed by the National Trust are being used to control the overgrown vegetation on the coastal sand dunes at Studland Bay, as part of a project called Dynamic Dunescapes. This project aims to restore 7,000 hectares of coastal sand dunes.

The African wild dog has returned to southern Malawi for the first time in 20 years. An endangered species with only 6,600 individuals left in Africa, this translocation to a reserve in Malawi will hopefully boost the conservation of the species, as it struggles to cope with increasing temperatures.

A rewilding project in Norfolk has revealed several rare plant species. The reestablishment of many lost ponds within Norfolk has led to the discovery of multiple endangered plant species, including one that hasn’t been seen in the county since the early 1900s! These newly flooded wetlands are helping to boost biodiversity in the area.

There is good news for the northern pool frog, which is currently the centre of a project that is reversing its extinction in the UK. First introduced from Sweden to a secret site in Norfolk in 2005, the population has now grown enough that more than 1,000 tadpoles have been released at new sites elsewhere in Norfolk at Thompson Common.