Years re­jected by Gove

Western Daily Press (Saturday) - - Countryside -

bird species as a re­sult of con­tin­ued ef­forts, all of which is pos­i­tive news.”

He said he hoped the trust could sup­port the need to un­der­take the rein­tro­duc­tion of species in a “con­sid­ered man­ner”, which could pos­i­tively con­trib­ute to the nat­u­ral sys­tem of the area and en­sure max­i­mum ben­e­fits to the lo­cal en­vi­ron­ment and peo­ple us­ing it.

Sup­port­ers of rein­tro­duc­ing lynx be­lieve the cats would bring a range of ben­e­fits, in­clud­ing help­ing to control deer num­bers, re­duc­ing dam­age to the for­est and im­prov­ing habi­tat for smaller an­i­mals, as well as pro­vid­ing eco­tourism op­por­tu­ni­ties.

Op­po­nents, such as the Na­tional Sheep As­so­ci­a­tion, have raised con­cerns about the po­ten­tial im­pacts, in­clud­ing losses of live­stock and the wel­fare of the wild an­i­mals re­leased into the “busy, in­dus­trial for­est”.

NSA chief ex­ec­u­tive, Phil Stocker, said: “We strongly be­lieve this is the right de­ci­sion on eco­log­i­cal, so­cial and agri­cul­tural grounds.

“To­day’s vic­tory is not just for farm­ers but for the ecol­ogy of the area, the ru­ral com­mu­nity and the farm­ing econ­omy.

“The threat of the lynx against sheep was very real and we could not be hap­pier that this isn’t a risk our mem­bers will have to face.”

Lynx dis­ap­peared from Bri­tain in about 700AD

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