The Project | The Feasibility

Pine marten restoration – the feasibility

Pine marten reintroduction or reinforcement would be a major proactive step towards restoring viable pine marten populations to England and Wales.

Any reintroduction or reinforcement must comply with guidelines produced by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). A reintroduction or reinforcement will only be considered feasible if there is suitable extensive woodland habitat for foraging, denning and resting to support a pine marten population, and if an adequate number of animals can be taken from an appropriate source population without affecting the viability of that source population. Social and economic factors must also be taken into account in order to maximise the likelihood of a reintroduction or reinforcement being successful.

The VWT completed a feasibility study to assess habitat suitability and environmental factors that may affect establishment of a self-sustaining pine marten population. This allowed us to identify several sites in Wales and England that have suitable habitat to support a pine marten population. Following extensive field surveys, engagement with local communities and stakeholders, and with relevant licences granted, a population reinforcement was carried out in mid-Wales during autumn 2015. Read more about this here.