On Sunday 19th May, a group of 10 volunteers, alongside a licenced ecologist, Aby Sampson, undertook South West Lakes Trust’s bi-annual dormouse box checks at Roadford Lake, near Launceston. South West Lakes Trust’s checks have been taking place for the past 17 years, and are carried out in line with the National Dormouse Monitoring Project which helps assess the state of the UK population.

A total of four adult dormice were recorded; only one of these was active, and the other three dormice were in a torpid state. In addition to dormice, we also recorded voles, long eared bats, wood mice, nesting birds and bees!

Kit Hancock, Senior Countryside Warden for South West Lakes Trust, said “It is absolutely fantastic that Roadford Lake has become a stronghold for this rare and endangered species; it shows that all of the habitat restoration work that South West Lakes Trust is carrying out is most definitely working.”

Emma Scotney, Ecologist, said, “We are very lucky to have a population of dormice at Roadford. To be able to teach and sensitively show our volunteers about this protected species is a pleasure.”

Over the years, South West Lakes Trust have been carrying out habitat management and restoration works to improve connectivity and to connect wildlife corridors so that the dormice can colonise in different parts of the woodland. This year, one of the dormice was found in a previously unrecorded area.

To carry out dormouse surveying, you need to have a license granted from Natural England. It is not permitted for members of the public to open boxes. The next survey at Roadford Lake will be in September; if you are interested in attending or wildlife recording, please ensure you are on the mailing list ([email protected]) or call 01566 771930.