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Last Updated: Monday September 11 2006 09:50 GMT

New hope for endangered bird

Hen harrier

There is hope for England's most endangered bird of prey - the hen harrier - after a big breeding season.

A total of 46 chicks have hatched in 12 nests - the highest number since a project to watch them started in 2002.

But campaigners are still concerned about the threat to the creatures, as their habitat continues to be destroyed and vandals attack nests.

Away from the area where the project is taking place, around 60% of the creatures' attempts to nest fail.

Hen harriers eat red grouse chicks and, because grouse shooting is popular, some land-owners don't like the birds being on their land.

But conservationists have called for land-owners to join together to make sure the hen harrier doesn't die out.

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