Published: 20:36, 07 April 2021
| Updated: 19:38, 08 April 2021
A Kent MP has taken on the role of championing beavers and raising awareness of the species in the UK.
Sir Roger Gale, who represents North Thanet, was approached to become the parliamentary champion for the rodent.
In his role, the Conservative politician will back rewilding schemes for the animal and support legislation which will help the dam-building creature flourish.
Taking to Twitter today, Sir Roger said: "I am very pleased to announce, on International Beaver Day, that I have been asked to become a parliamentary Species Champion for the beaver and that I am honoured to be able to accept that invitation.
"The beaver has a huge amount to contribute to the national environment of Britain and I look forward to promoting the cause for the re-introduction, in the wild, of these wonderful animals!"
A record number of beavers will be released into sites in England and Wales by wildlife trusts this year – 20 years after the semi-aquatic mammal first made a comeback.
The Kent Wildlife Trust website lists the benefits of having the once-thriving rodents back in the wild.
"Beavers create diverse wetland habitats that can provide a home for a wide range of wildlife, especially aquatic invertebrates which act as a food source for other species," it states.
"Beaver dams slow and filter water, causing sediment and nutrients to be deposited in ponds. This improves the quality of water flowing from sites where beavers are present."
North Thanet MP talks about becoming parliamentary champion for the beavers