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Wild Bison to Return to UK Woodlands for the First Time in 6,000 years

Pritam Kashyap
Pritam Kashyap

Wild bison are being reintroduced to the UK for the first time in 6,000 years. The United Kingdom plans on releasing a small herd of wild bison in Kent. According to reports, the release is planned for the spring of 2022 and this reintroduction process aims to secure this endangered species future. 

The £1m project to reintroduce the animals will help secure the future of an endangered species. But they will also naturally regenerate a former pine wood plantation by killing off trees. This creates a healthy mix of woodland, scrub and glades, boosting insect, bird and plant life. 

During the initial release, one male and three females will be set free. Natural breeding will increase the size of the herd, with one calf per year the norm for each female. The bison will come from the Netherlands or Poland, where releases have been successful and safe. 

 

The Bison's presence is expected to completely change the ecosystem of the woods, the bison will kill selected trees by eating their barks and rubbing on them in order to get rid of their thick winter fur. This will create a rise in the insect population that will be able to feed on the deadwood, subsequently leading to an increase in the bird population since they will have more insects to feed on. 

According to some conservationists, this method of reintroducing lost species into their natural habitats is the best way for Britain to tackle its "battered biodiversity". Britain is one of the most nature depleted countries in the world, despite the best efforts of conservationists and experts. Wildlife in the UK has reduced by almost 60 per cent since 1970 and this plan involving the slow reintroduction of wild bison may change that. 

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