Over the summer, ZSL colleagues collaborated with Natural England and associated specialists to determine the long term success of two of ZSL’s earliest native species conservation breeding programmes.
Natural England’s Species Recovery Programme for the field cricket (Gryllus campestris) and wart-biter cricket (Decticus verrucivorus) commenced in the early 1990s with ZSL providing the conservation breeding and health management expertise to enable new in-situ populations to be established in Southern England.
Some 18 years after the last reintroductions, it’s heartening to be able to confirm that both species reintroduction populations have persisted. Determining the long term success of conservation efforts is always challenging but such multigeneration persistence (18 generations for the field cricket and 9 generations for the wart biter cricket) is very encouraging and a cause for celebration.
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