A NORTH-EAST wildlife trust is appealing for volunteers to help track down one of the UK’s most elusive creatures in the region.

The Durham Wildlife Trust will be running its annual harvest mouse nest survey through November and December and is appealing to get more people involved in the tricky search.

The harvest mouse, which is mainly found in Yorkshire, tends to live in tall grass, road side verges or hedgerows, where nests can be built.

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A Durham Wildlife Trust spokesman said: “A national survey in the 1970s reported only a handful of harvest mouse records in the North-East, but the surveys are showing that they may occur more widely than had been thought, although not in great numbers.”

At the start of the year, nine new records of harvest mice sightings were registered in the Teesdale area, which were the first sightings for more than four decades.

Anyone interested in looking for harvest mouse nests in fields or hedgerows can attend a training session led by ecologist, Ian Bond, on Sunday, October 16.

The session for survey volunteers is non-compulsory and will run between 10am and noon in the Cowpen Bewley Woodland Centre, off Seal Sands Link Road, Stockton.

To take part in the session, email bondian@hotmail.co.uk or to volunteer for the Trust, email Vivien Kent via vkent@durhamwt.co.uk or call 0191-584-3112.