Twenty-two wild cats were born in the highlands - and could be among the first species released into the wild in Britain 200 years ago

The return of the ‘high tiger’: 22 wild cats were born in the wildlife park

‘Highland Tiger’ is back: 22 wild cats born in a wildlife park – and could be the first of a species released into Britain’s wild 200 years ago as part of an effort to save them from extinction

  • The last wild cat population in Scotland is no longer considered a viable group
  • Scientists have captured 16 wild cats in captivity in the hope that they will breed
  • Twenty-two kittens are born between April and August
  • Animals could be released into the wild as early as 2023

Twenty-two wild cats were born in the highlands – and they could be among the first to be released into the wild in Britain 200 years ago.

The wild cats, nicknamed ‘Highland tigers’, were bred as part of a conservation project led by the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland (RZSS).

The Saving Wildcats Project works with national and international experts to restore Scotland’s endangered wild cat population by breeding and releasing them at carefully selected sites in the Cairngorms National Park.

The kittens, born between April and August of this year, are planned to be released in the Highlands in 2023.

Twenty-two wild cats were born in the highlands – and could be among the first species released into the wild in Britain 200 years ago

wild cats in scotland

Wild cats were hunted and driven to extinction in England and Wales over a century ago when all predators were considered insects.

She has not been able to return since then, due to habitat loss and fragmentation and more recently interbreeding with domestic and feral cats.

Scotland’s last wild cat population is no longer considered a viable group.

But it is hoped that restoring a healthy population of few local predators will restore the balance in the ecosystem.

They perform important functions such as controlling prey such as rabbits and rodents while giving other hunters competition for food.

David Barclay, Director of Wildcat Conservation, said: “These cats are the future of wild cats in Scotland with decades of extensive research showing their species are likely to become extinct in Britain if we don’t release them.

Our goal for the first breeding season was 20 kittens, so getting 22 kittens out of every six mothers is a huge success giving us a great base for the next phase of the project.

While human presence is kept to a minimum to give these cats the best possible chance of surviving after their release, our small team of expert rangers are able to monitor the kittens and their parents on cameras from a distance.

It was great to watch them grow and develop during the summer.

“Once the kittens are fully independent and are no longer dependent on their mothers, they will move into special pre-release enclosures that are designed to help prepare them for the many challenges of life in the wild.”

Planned releases of wild cats in Scotland are subject to carriage licensing.

The Saving Wildcats project is located in a quiet area away from visitors at RZSS Highland Wildlife Park near Kingussie.

It is led by RZSS in collaboration with NatureScot, Forestry, Land Scotland, Cairngorms National Park Authority, Norden’s Ark and the environmental authorities of Andalusia, Spain.

Wild cats were hunted and persecuted to extinction in England and Wales more than a century ago when all predators were considered insects.

Wild cats were hunted and persecuted to extinction in England and Wales more than a century ago when all predators were considered insects.

Dr David Hetherington, Director of Nature Networks at Cairngorms National Parks Authority, said: “Cairngorms National Park is home to more than 25 per cent of the UK’s rare and endangered species and it is very exciting to work with local and international partners to plan. wildcat is released here.

Scotland’s wild cats have been identified as a priority species in Cairngorms Nature’s five-year action plan, and this successful first breeding season at the Saving Wildcats Center is a milestone in our collective effort to save this endangered species from extinction in Britain.

Wild cats were hunted and driven to extinction in England and Wales over a century ago when all predators were considered insects.

She has not been able to return since then, due to habitat loss and fragmentation and more recently interbreeding with domestic and feral cats.

Scotland’s last wild cat population is no longer considered a viable group.

But it is hoped that restoring a healthy population of few local predators will restore the balance in the ecosystem.

They perform important functions such as controlling prey such as rabbits and rodents while giving other hunters competition for food.

The most successful reproductive year for rare peak-zone chickens for more than a decade

The National Trust has had the most successful breeding year for rare Peak region chickens for more than a decade.

The charity said seven young men made it out of multiple nests on the National Trust’s land in High Peak. This comes after working with RPSB and the Peak District Raptor Group to encourage raptors to live in the national park.

The secretariat said it has done work including cutting heather to encourage a more diverse range of bog plants including moss, mulberry and cottonwood, helping to support wildlife such as the small mammals that birds depend on for food.

The fund is also working with tenants to make sure they manage the land to support more birds of prey in the area.

Hen harriers are the most threatened bird of prey in England, due to historical persecution and because they prey on red grouse chicks to feed their young, putting them in conflict with commercial archery farms.

They saw numbers increase from a low in 2013 as no bird managed to escape from nests in England, putting the bird on the brink of extinction in the country.

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