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Tourism preventing Kenya's cheetahs from raising young, study finds

Research in Maasai Mara linked areas with high density of vehicles to lower numbers of cubs raised to independence

High levels of tourism can lead to a dramatic reduction in the number of cheetahs able to raise their young to independence, new research has found.

A study in Kenya’s Maasai Mara savannah found that in areas with a high density of tourist vehicles, the average number of cubs a mother cheetah raised to independence was just 0.2 cubs per litter – less than a tenth of the 2.3 cubs per litter expected in areas with low tourism.

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'Time running out' for UK parks, government told

Coalition of environmental groups put forward Charter for Parks as ‘crisis point’ declared following years of budget cuts

A coalition of countryside groups and environmentalists are calling on the government to protect the UK’s parks and green spaces which are at “crisis point” following years of swingeing budget cuts.

The group has today put forward a “Charter for Parks”which calls on ministers in England, Wales and Scotland to make it a legal requirement for all parks and green spaces to be maintained and managed to a “good standard.”

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Millions of British children breathing toxic air, Unicef warns

More than 4.5m affected, says UN group, while tests suggest children’s shorter height increases exposure on busy roads

More than 4.5 million children in the UK are growing up in areas with toxic levels of air pollution, the UN children’s organisation Unicef has warned.

Tests suggesting that children walking along busy roads are exposed to a third more air pollution than adults, as their shorter height places them close to passing car exhausts, were also released on Thursday.

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UK gardeners urged to build ponds as sightings of frogs and toads dry up

Sightings of toads have fallen by nearly a third and frogs by 17% since 2014, RSPB survey finds

People with gardens are being urged to create simple ponds or areas of long grass because sightings of frogs and toads in gardens are drying up.

Reports of toads in gardens have fallen by nearly a third since 2014, while sightings of frogs have dropped by 17% over the same period, according to the Big Garden Birdwatch, the RSPB’s wildlife survey.

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Shetland scallop fishery retains eco label despite dredging protests

Review rejects conservation groups’ complaints that use of dredging gear damages seabed

A scallop fishery in Shetland has retained its coveted eco label after an independent review rejected allegations that it damaged the marine environment.

The marine conservation charity Open Seas and the National Trust for Scotland protested that the fishery’s use of dredging gear to harvest scallops caused unjustifiable damage to the seabed and other marine species.

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