NEWSLETTER Spring 2023

The King in Country Life

The Red Squirrel Survival Trust (RSST) was featured in an article in Country Life magazine (9.11.2022) exploring HM The King’s wide range of interests and patronages as the Prince of Wales. At his proposal, RSST was instrumental in the establishment of the UK Squirrel Accord: 43 leading heritage, woodland, conservation, timber industry and governmental organisations across the UK, working to secure the future of red squirrels and native.

England Red Squirrel Action Plan Launched

On 21 January (Red Squirrel Appreciation Day) the UK Squirrel Accord launched the England Red Squirrel Action Plan (2023 – 2028) which has been developed by a representative committee of stakeholders under the leadership of RSST trustee and  nature conservation expert Stephen Trotter. Produced with Defra and in association with the responsible authorities in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the plan is the first authoritative, government-approved guidance for the treatment of red squirrels both in the wild and in captivity.

Grey Squirrel Fertility Control Research Update

With 15% of broadleaf trees and 5% of conifers in the UK damaged or killed by grey squirrels, there is growing interest in the media about a system being developed to help reduce the numbers of this problematic invasive species. Working in close cooperation with Defra, RSST, as part of the UK Squirrel Accord, is supporting research at the Animal & Plant Health Agency to develop an effective and affordable grey squirrel fertility control delivery system. Defra’s modelling shows the use of this benign contraceptive, delivered through a species-specific hopper, alongside existing control techniques, will lead to a natural collapse in the numbers of grey squirrels, allowing both native red squirrels and

Alan Titchmarsh Gardening for Red Squirrels

As an Ambassador for RSST, Alan Titchmarsh is working to encourage gardeners to plant trees and shrubs that have been identified as vital food sources for red squirrels. This will prepare the ground to help feed our native red  squirrels  they begin to repopulate areas they thrived in before they were pushed out by invading grey squirrels. The initial aim is to encourage gardeners in and around areas that have existing red squirrel populations to plant these living larders.“The most popular growing food sources are acorns, conifer seeds, holly berries, crab apples, wild and bird cherries, Bullace, Dogrose and Guelder rose hips, blackberries and raspberries. They also love sunflower hearts” Alan says. “These trees and shrubs are suitable for gardens of all sizes and by planting them now they will grow and mature and be ready for when the red squirrels come.

RSST Annual Photographic Competition

RSST is looking for striking images through the four seasons that capture the essence of the red squirrel. Four winners will be selected from each of the Open categories (‘Spring’, ‘Summer’, ‘Autumn’ and ‘Winter’). An Overall Winner will be chosen from the winners of the open categories. This year sees the addition of a fifth category for Young Photographers aged 18 and under. Closing date for entries: 31st March 2023.

RSST Helps Fulfil Young Photographer’s Dream

Marcus Roberts, an aspiring young photographer whose ambition was to film red squirrels, met up with the well-known wildlife film maker and RSST Ambassador Dani Connor in a red squirrel haven in Anglesey. Also on hand was former soldier Hugh Rowlands who stewards the area. Despite atrocious weather, Marcus was able to watch groups of six or seven red squirrels at any moment and left with a number of delightful images.


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