Artificial Otter Holts
Whether as compensation for loss of habitat due to development works or as a wildlife enhancement measure, artificial otter holts provide added cover along river banks where other suitable habitat locations have been lost or are lacking. Alongside sympathetic management of riverine and aquatic habitats, creation of artificial cover for otter can encourage these mammals back into stretches of river where they have previously been present.
As part of a larger habitat enhancement project at Rufford Abbey Country Park, an artificial otter holt was created. The area next to the golf course, which is bounded by Rainworth Brook and a dyke, used to have both water voles and otters. Otter tracks have recently been found on site and it is hoped creating holts for otters will encourage them back to the site permanently.