Sunday, 1 April 2007

The Litter Problem

I saw three voles this evening, two by the bridge, and one slaloming its way from the east culvert end through the shopping trolleys which have been there for, what, a month, six weeks? The litter's insane, which is depressing as I totally cleared the banks last week. Now an odd tin or bottle isn't going to bother the water voles, but scraps of food being dropped in on wrappers will encourage rats, and rats can drive out voles, as this email from Derek Gow says:

There is little doubt that Brown rats can be major predators of juvenile water voles. Adult voles are probably safer through they will apparently avoid rat foraging areas if they can. Brown rats typically exist at low densities along water courses unless there is a food source abundantly available which allows then the option to exist in larger numbers. Quite typically this could be a farm or waste food disposal opportunity.

So maybe if we all kept an eye out for litter being dropped, we might make some positive impact on the problem. The fact a lot of it's caught up in the trolleys doesn't help...

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