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Last Updated: Wednesday, 19 March 2008, 09:59 GMT
Great Bustard operation expanded
Great bustard
Chicks are brought from Russia
A programme to bring an unusual bird back to the UK is being expanded after a 3,000 grant.

Great Bustards, once extinct in the UK, are slowly being released onto Salisbury Plain by a local group.

The Great Bustard Group (GBG) is to double the size of its release pen - with help from the army - to push more new birds through the programme.

Chicks are brought from Russia quarantined, before being released into the pen and then into the wild.

The extended pen - which will be about one kilometre in length and 600 metres wide - is also a haven from foxes for more mature birds.

Peregrine Rawlins, from the GBG, said: "We have three years of released birds out there now.

"As more birds survive in the wild, there won't be enough room for the needs of the new chicks and the mature birds."

The Great Bustard was wiped out in England in the 19th century but was reintroduced to Salisbury Plain in 2004.



SEE ALSO
Great Bustard lays eggs in wild
23 Jul 07 |  Wiltshire
Dog helps chicks fear predators
14 Sep 05 |  Wiltshire
More bustard chicks due on plain
19 May 05 |  Wiltshire

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