WILTSHIRE Wildlife Trust is asking people to help locate populations of hazel dormice in the county.

The trust is holding a free event called Warning: May Contain Nuts on Saturday, as part of the National Dormouse Monitoring Programme, which celebrates its 21st anniversary this year.

The trust and the New Forest National Park Authority are jointly holding the event to encourage people to get involved and carry out surveys here in Wiltshire.

People will be able to hear talks about the hazel dormouse, go for a short nutty walk, and find out how they can take part in this important national survey by looking for hazel nuts.

“The hazel dormouse is largely nocturnal and arboreal (tree-living) and therefore it is very difficult for people to see. By encouraging volunteers to look for dormouse-nibbled hazel nuts as evidence of its existence, we can build a better picture of where in Wiltshire this cute ginger rodent is currently living,” says the trust’s Diane Nicolle.

The hazel dormouse is the only dormouse species native to the UK and has suffered dramatic declines during the past 100 years due to habitat loss, fragmentation and deterioration.

This has led to its current protected status and inclusion in the National and Wiltshire Biodiversity Action Plans.

If you wish to book a space for Warning: May Contain Nuts or want a pack and more information, contact Diane on 01380 725670 ext 230, or email dianen@wiltshirewildlife.org.

The event will run from 12.30pm to 4pm at Morgan’s Vale and Woodfalls on November 21.