18, 2015 VIDEO:
Rescued harvest mice released by East Huntspill's Secret World
harvest mice have been successfully rescued and returned to the
wild by carers at Secret World Wildlife Rescue near Burnham-On-Sea.
Carer Samantha ACourt oversees Secret Worlds breeding
and release programme, which was recently featured on BBCs
week Samantha released eight young mice back into the wild at
Secret World. Preparation is everything, to give the mice the
best chance and to increase the size and diversity of the wild
paired up a male and female mouse from different bloodlines to
mate," she told Burnham-On-Sea.com.
babies were tiny and pink when newborn, but theyve soon
grown up and after just fifteen days they were weaned and ready
to leave their mother. The youngsters then stayed in a nursery
tank for a week or two to monitor them until we were happy that
they were ready for release."
prepare them for the wild, theyve had very little contact
with humans. We created a natural environment for them in their
tank using plants taken from their wild habitat. Grasses, reeds,
teasels, corn stalks, moss, and seasonal plants like blackberry,
rosehip and hawthorn went in, along with nuts and seeds, so they
have got used to foraging."
was wonderful to release them at the edge of the woodland here
at Secret World where there is ideal habitat long grasses
and dense vegetation. It was a soft release which
means weve given them a waterproof shelter which they can
return to if they need to."
keep topping up their food and water supply for a while to support
them while they make the transition to the wild and build their
own nests among the grasses and reeds. Our goal is to establish
a local population of harvest mice. They are such fascinating
animals and we are really looking forward to giving visitors an
insight into their world this weekend."
harvest mice at Secret World Wildlife Rescue are always a favourite
for visitors of all ages, and for the first time next weekend
visitors can go further into their world.
wildlife rescue centre in East Huntspill near Burnham-On-Sea will
be open on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th October from 10am to
well as bats and hedgehogs, visitors will be able to get up close
to harvest mice and find out why the little mammals could use
a helping hand.
harvest mouse is the smallest British rodent and weighs just 6
grams when fully grown. Their numbers have declined in recent
years, partly due to changing agricultural practices.
the Bats and Bobs open weekend there will be morning
and afternoon talks on harvest mice on both days. As well as meeting
the mice and learning more about Secret Worlds efforts to
increase their numbers, visitors can have a go at setting up a
harvest mouse habitat!
attractions include bat talks, hedgehog talks, specialist stalls,
activities and a food court with vegetarian and vegan options.
Entry is free but donations are very welcome as Secret World relies
on donations to care for the harvest mice and other animals on
of food for the animals are also very welcome, particularly Royal
Canin baby cat biscuits for all the rescued hedgehogs on site,
as well as non-biological washing powder for all the dirty laundry!
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