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Grey Squirrels

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2020

   
 
     
 

The introduction of grey squirrels in the 1880s has had a disastrous impact on the UK’s only native squirrel species, the red squirrel.

Greys compete with reds for food and also carry a virus known as squirrelpox. While greys are actually immune to the disease, they transmit it to reds, for whom it is fatal. The UK’s only viable populations of red squirrels are in places where greys are rare or absent.

Grey squirrels can also affect the composition of native woodland by bark stripping and eating the seeds of certain trees. In parts of the country, the species is culled to protect red squirrels and mitigate its damaging impact.

Grey squirrels feast on hazelnuts by cracking the shell in half. You may also find pine cones that have been nibbled, leaving what looks like an apple core behind. They will cache their food in autumn if it is abundant. Grey squirrels make a rough nest, called a 'drey' out of twigs, leaves and strips of bark in the fork of a branch, high up in the tree canopy. Females may have two litters of three to four young a year.

     
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     

2021

   
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     
     
 
     
 
     
   
     
   
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