• Question: Which animal is the most endangered? What is done to conserve it?

    Asked by daisylolaoco to Scotch Thistle, Barn Owl, Brown garden snail, Common Crane, Emperor Dragonfly, Hazel Dormouse, Catshark, St Kilda Wren on 8 Dec 2017. This question was also asked by jeffrey.
    • Photo: Lesser-Spotted Catshark

      Lesser-Spotted Catshark answered on 8 Dec 2017:

      It certainly isn’t me. Catshark numbers are stable or possibly increasing in some areas. It is a big mystery why catsharks are doing so well compared to other sharks like angel sharks which are critically endangered. We hope the genome sequence of this ‘successful shark’ will be able to play a role in answering that question.

    • Photo: Hazel Dormouse

      Hazel Dormouse answered on 8 Dec 2017:

      Despite being native to the UK, the Hazel Dormouse can now only be found in South England. A few populations were released into Yorkshire and the Midlands approximately 5 years ago but they have been very difficult to track. 40-50% of Hazel Dormice die during hibernation, which is unusual because we know that they survived an ice age so British winters should not be causing them too much trouble. Although nobody knows there actual population size, The Great Nut Hunt is held every year to estimate population trends. Anyone who participates will collect nut shells and assess what animal ate it according to the teeth marks that are left as the Hazel Dormouse leaves a very distinctive mark. The other helpful conservation effort has been nest boxes placed in woodlands so that they can hibernate safely and use the space for litters in the spring.