Rare Breeds Survival Trust says its new RBST Watchlist, published today in a fresh format, reflects growing recognition among farmers and smallholders of the commercial potential and environmental importance of the UK’s rare breeds of livestock and equines.
RBST works across the UK to save and safeguard the future of rare and native livestock and equine breeds, and its Watchlist is the annual situation report for these breeds. The outlook for many of the UK’s rare native breeds has remained broadly unchanged, thanks to continuing interest from new breeders, the commitment of dedicated Breed Societies, conservation programmes at the 25 RBST-accredited farm parks, and generous public support for RBST’s work.
The way the RBST Watchlist is produced has also been updated this year to give a more holistic view of each breed’s outlook, reflecting robust measures of the genetic diversity within each breed, not just the numbers of breeding females registered as previously used. The new Watchlist is also presented in a simpler style to clearly show Priority and At Risk breeds, and can be found at www.rbst.org.uk.