Survey work since 2006 has shown that the Whitchurch (Shropshire) area continues to be a national hot-spot for water voles.
Water voles are semi-aquatic mammals that live along watercourses, burrowing into the banks and feeding on sedge and grasses.
They are chestnut to dark brown in colour, with a blunt nose.
It is estimated that water voles have disappeared from 95% of their former territories. As of April 2008 water voles are a fully protected species under the Wildlife and Countryside Act.