Britain’s carnivores stage a surprising revival

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The number of badgers, stoats and otters is booming following a clampdown on hunting and pollution.

Britain’s carnivores’ populations have “markedly improved” since the 1960s according to a new study published in the journal Mammal Review. Species such as the otter, the polecat and the pine marten have even bounced back from the brink of extinction.

According to various scientists, most of the British carnivores have actually largely “done it for themselves” and recovered often surprisingly quickly after a reduction of activities such as hunting, trapping or the use of toxic chemicals.

Katie Sainsbury, the lead author of the study from the Environment and Sustainability Institute at Exeter University said to The Guardian: “Carnivores have recovered in a way that would have seemed incredibly unlikely in the 1970s, when extinction of some species looked like a real possibility.”

“Most of these species have essentially recovered by themselves, once pressures from predator controls and pollutants were reduced, and it’s taken them a while. Yes, there are more of them now than in most people’s lifetimes, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t potential for populations to grow and spread further.”

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