zpravodajství životního prostředí již od roku 1999

Why rural Britain would be a sadder place without beautiful hares

As myxomatosis spreads from rabbits, there are fears for the future of a species that holds a unique place in our affectionsI usually come across them at night, when I am driving home, or very early in the morning as I cycle across the Somerset Levels. Sometimes one runs down the road ahead, before darting under a gate and disappearing into the long grass. At other times, I glimpse what looks like a clod of earth in the middle of a field, which then surprises me by starting to move. And every once in a while I get a really good view, as I peer through a hedgerow and watch a hare feeding on wild grasses and meadow herbs.Hares are my favourite British mammal, so when I wrote a book about the natural history of my parish, I decided to call it Wild Hares and Hummingbirds (the latter referring to the hummingbird hawk-moth). Yet now I face the possibility that, in a few years' time, I'll no longer be able to see these captivating animals in the fields around my village. Last week, scientists declared that myxomatosis may have made the jump from rabbits and could wipe out Britain's brown hares. This fills me with dread. After all, up to 99% of Britain's rabbits were wiped out by this disease, before some managed to develop resistance. Continue reading...
Zdroj: The Guardian

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