Harvest mouse returns to Hampshire village

Over 25 years after it was thought to have been locally extinct this tiny mammal has been found. 

Harvesting Mouse (Micromys minutus) in it's Natural Habitat

More than 150 harvest mouse nests have been discovered around Selborne village, the birthplace of famous naturalist Gilbert White who was responsible for distinguishing the harvest mouse as a species in 1767.

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The harvest mouse was last seen in Selborne in 1990 and thought to be locally extinct but has made a comeback due to the efforts of the Selborne Farmer Cluster and volunteers.

DEFRA environment secretary Liz Truss says, “The farmers of Selborne should be congratulated for the innovative approach they have taken to managing their land for the good of the environment and local wildlife.”

Vital work such as hedge laying, hedge planting and the maintenance of grass headlands around arable fields to create habitats has been carried out. By working collectively the farmers have developed a connected habitat for birds, small mammals and insects. 

Discover how harvest mice are being helped by trained sniffer dogs.

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Read more wildlife news in BBC Wildlife Magazine.