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Conservation handbook lauched to save water voles

A new conservation handbook launched today by the Environment Agency (EA) has moved Britain's water voles a step closer to full legal protection.
The handbook backs calls for urgent legislation to give small freshwater mammals protection against the loss of habitats.'Since 1990 the water vole population in Britain has been decimated, with 95% of their numbers wiped out,' said EA national conservation manager Alastair Driver.The handbook is a joint EA and Oxford University WildCRU publication. 'The Water Vole Conservation Handbook describes best practice for land managers and developers to mitigate the damaging aspects of their activities, as well as pure conservation to proactively encourage water vole populations to expand into areas where they had previously been lost,' said WildCRU scientist Dr Tom Moorhouse.

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