Charity reports 48% increase in number of animal rescues

THE number of dogs, cats and horses rescued by an animal welfare charity this year has increased significantly compared with the same period last year.

The ISPCA, Ireland’s largest animal welfare charity, has seen a 48% increase in the number dogs rescued and 20% increase in the number of unwanted cats.

According to the charity, an unprecedented number of equine cruelty cases required its Equine Centre in Mallow to care for an additional 21% more horses this year.

Meanwhile, six of Ireland’s 15 native fish species and one of our three amphibians have been listed as a threatened, according to a report.

The charity is urgently asking the public for its support during World Animal Week, which runs until Sunday, and to consider adopting a rescued animal, supporting its winter appeal, or by making a donation.

A new ‘Red List’ of Irish amphibians, reptiles and freshwater fish found that, while most species were considered to be of least concern, of our 15 native fish species, one was found to be critically endangered (European eel) and five were deemed to be vulnerable — pollan, arctic char, twaite shad, Killarney shad and Atlantic salmon.

One further species, the sea lamprey, was found to be near threatened. Of the five amphibians and reptiles assessed, one was found to be endangered — the natterjack toad.

Two of the established non-native fish, dace and chub, were identified as invasive species in need of management.

Cathal Gallagher of Inland Fisheries Ireland said the report could help sustain fish population for the next decade.

“For us who work closely with fish this document catalogues the status, distribution and threats facing both our native and non native fish species, it points to outstanding issues that need to be addressed and gives us a time frame for actions.

“This document provides scientist, managers and stakeholders with an analysis which can be used to support our fish populations for the next 10 years. Thanks must go to all who contributed to the development of this updated Red List.”

The Red List was compiled by scientists from organisations across the island including Inland Fisheries Ireland, the National Parks and Wildlife Service, the Northern Ireland Environment Agency and the National Biodiversity Data Centre.

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