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Vole count protects endangered birds

Words by Abi Scaife

Vole counting is helping to protect endangered bird species in Scotland.

Wait - vole counting?

That’s right - it’s time to revisit the circle of life. Voles are an important food source for many predators in Scotland, but when their numbers are low, these predators need to turn to other species - many of which are endangered.

The capercaillie is a rare bird that lives in Scotland, and can often be a food source for predators such as owls when vole numbers fall. 

Ah - hence the counting?

Hence the counting! If vole numbers are high, it’s happy days for the capercaillie - but if they are low, it may be time to intervene with alternative food sources to distract predators. 

It’s amazing that there are so many people committed to protecting endangered creatures like the capercaillie - and it bodes well for the future.

Charity check-in 

At Smiley Movement, we like to elevate the work of charities across the world. Here are three charities whose causes align with the themes in this article.

Four Paws UK. This charity is an animal welfare organisation, working globally to help animals in need. Learn more here.

Wildlife Justice Commission. This international foundation works to end animal trafficking around the globe. Find out more here.

Born Free. This is a wildlife conservation charity that’s passionate about wild animal welfare and Compassionate Conservation. Find out more here.

This article aligns with the UN SDG Life on Land.

This article aligns with the following UN SDGs

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