The Shropshire Pine Marten Project began in 2009 with the aim of investigating reported sightings of pine martens Martes martes in the county. Britain’s second rarest carnivore was considered to be extinct in England and no records of these elusive mammals had been confirmed in Shropshire for over a century.
In 2015, the first pine martens were discovered in south Shropshire and the project is now working towards determining their origin. Surveys for pine marten scats take place throughout the year and over 50 hair tube traps have been installed in the area that this small population appears to be inhabiting. Most excitingly however is the footage being obtained on camera traps, which has proven the continued presence of pine martens in Shropshire.
The project has now featured on BBC Countryfile and Midlands Today and has attracted media interest from around the globe.
For more information, please join the Shropshire Pine Marten Project Facebook page
Follow Stuart on Twitter @PinemartensUK
If you think you have seen a pine marten in Shropshire, please let Stuart know: firstname.lastname@example.org
The below size chart shows the difference between pine martens and their cousins.
Thanks to CJ Wildlife for donating 2 pine marten den boxes for use in the project.