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Present for the Planet: building better habitats for wildlife

Emily Cooper



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This Christmas, give the gift of rivers teeming with life.

Did you know that 99% of all rivers in England and Wales are obstructed by manmade obstacles? These artificial barriers pose one of the greatest threats to river ecosystems, resulting in the loss of connectivity and habitat fragmentation. Faced with unsurmountable weirs and dams, fish are prevented from following their natural migration routes.
As if that wasn't bad enough, global populations of freshwater megafauna (large animals) have declined by a shocking 88% since 1970. Animals in these habitats are among the most threatened in the world. It's hardly surprising, particularly considering that only 14% of water bodies in our own country are in good ecological status Without intervention, it's possible that we could stand to lose these charismatic creatures forever...

How are our Trusts are fighting for wildlife?

Day in, day out, our local Trusts work tirelessly to protect and improve rivers for wildlife. In 2018, we eased, passed or removed 82 river barriers, as well as improving 562km of river habitat. That's not all, though; our Trusts carry out a huge range of activities which help wildlife to thrive.
  • Removing invasive species, making it possible for native species to re-establish
  • Addressing pollution incidents, ensuring that wildlife can survive in our rivers
  • Creating entirely new wetlands, providing a home for huge amounts of biodiversity
  • Planting trees, creating new habitats
  • Carrying out cleanups to remove litter from our rivers and riverbanks
If we want to keep up with the looming tide of habitat loss and pollution, though, we'll need to do even more. That's where you come in. ARK before and after The results of habitat restoration carried out by Action for the River Kennet. Hear more from this excellent Trust later this week!

How you can help

This Christmas, we're asking you to consider giving a Present For The Planet. With your donation, we could remove more weirs, helping fish to move freely; we could create more wetlands, providing a niche for biodiverse populations; and we could make sure that wildlife always has a home in our rivers. Whether you choose to contribute a small, one-time donation, or a commitment to an ongoing contribution, you can make a difference.

Donate Now

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