MOSCOW, December 22 (Sputnik) — Some 717 out of 6,590 Local Wildlife Sites monitored in the United Kingdom were lost or damaged between 2009 and 2013, the Wildlife Trust said in report Monday.
"New evidence [has been] gathered this year which suggests that more than 10% of the 6,590 Local Wildlife Sites monitored have been lost or damaged in the last five years," the nature watchdog said in a report published on the organization's website.
Based on data gathered by the trust, 69 percent of grassland in the Local Wildlife Sites visited was in poor and declining condition with 238 sites lost, damaged or deteriorated since 2005.
According to the report, the number of sites being degraded is also linked to the rapid decline in the number of professional ecologists and access to expertise in local authorities.
"If this trend is allowed to continue, more of our most valuable and treasured wildlife and wild places will be lost forever," UK Wildlife Trust Director Stephen Trotter was quoted as saying in a report on the website.
The Local Wildlife Sites are a collection of often hidden, wild natural environments such as meadows and woodlands across the United Kingdom. The sites also act as a habitat for wildlife.