Pictured: Common (hazel) dormouse (Muscardinus avellanarius), in researcher's hand, Nottinghamshire, UK, June 2015.
A rare species of mouse that is on the verge of extinction have been reintroduced into the British countryside in an attempt to boost their dwindling numbers.
The population of hazel dormice, which was once common in England and Wales, has seen a dramatic decline over recent decades due to the loss of their woodland and hedgerow habitats and changes in woodland management.
To counteract this, 20 pairs of the captive-bred mice were released at an undisclosed woodland location in Nottinghamshire, near two other release sites which have previously seen successful reintroductions.
© Ann & Steve Toon/Solent News
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