The humble little dormouse certainly touched your hearts during our Twelve Gifts of Christmas campaign. 

We invited you to gift wildlife boxes for dormice and we received twice as many orders for these than we expected.  

Your generosity has enabled us to commission 20 boxes, which are made by our volunteers on the Countryside Regeneration Trust’s Bere Marsh Farm in Dorset. 

Mapping & Conservation Officer Ruth Moss checks a dormouse box Dormouse and berries

Having the wildlife boxes created at Bere Marsh Farm not only keeps base costs to a minimum, but also enables us to produce tailor-made boxes whose design has been well researched and considered.  

Once they’re finished, they will be installed at Awnells Farm, Babers Farm and Turnastone Court Farm. 

The boxes are similar to bird nest boxes, but with a couple of key differences. Their entrance is at the back, close to the tree, to protect the dormice from predators, and the boxes are made with either a hinged or sliding lid to allow us to monitor if the box is being used and whether they are successfully breeding. 

The hazel dormouse is an important indicator of healthy natural habitat; if its species is present in good numbers, there is a good chance that the surrounding environment is diverse and supporting plenty of other wildlife as well. 

It is rare to see dormice during the day as that’s when they tend to sleep. At night, they go on the hunt for their favourite food supplies of insects, berries and nuts, commonly found in dense hedgerows and coppiced woodlands.  

Dormouse in palm of hand One of the CRT wildlife boxes for dormice

Many of the woodlands and hedgerows where dormice thrive are being destroyed or are deteriorating in the UK, which means the dormouse has become an endangered species. 

With your generous donations, the CRT will be able to place dormouse boxes throughout the woodlands on our properties so provide dormice with a safe place to nest and sleep. 

How you can help

We can’t do it without you. If you want to help us protect local wildlife you can support the CRT in any number of ways, from joining as a CRT Friend to volunteering on one of our farms and attending our events. You can also sign-up to our monthly newsletter 'CRT News' for regular updates from our farms, straight to your inbox.

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