Carron Valley’s Red Squirrels
The Carron Valley Red Squirrel Project aims to understand, and to protect the red squirrel population in the region.
About the Project
Working in partnership with Saving Scotland Red Squirrels (SSRS) and the Carron Valley Community Woodland the project was brought about by a small team of residents, supported by VRG’s Project Development Officer, who successful applied to a VRG Community Grant.
Focused surveys of red and grey squirrels will take place across the Carron Valley and district region in Autumn 2021. These surveys will collect data from visual surveys, hair traps on feeders and trail cameras. With support and training from SSRS Grey squirrel control may also be carried out in the region to protect the native Red squirrel population.
Education and engagement activities will also be taking place, with Community Talks and Walks planned throughout the year. Keep an eye on the Updates and Event’s Page to find out when our next event is happening.
We are very grateful to the many partners who are enabling this project to happen, including Stirling and District Men’s shed who have made the Feeder Boxes, The University of Stirling, who have donated microscopes for hair trap analysis, and SSRS, a national partnership led by Scottish Wildlife Trust who are providing invaluable support and advice throughout the project.
Why Do Red Squirrels Need Protection
One of Scotland’s most iconic and loved native species the Red Squirrel population has fallen drastically in recent decades. This is largely due to the spread of the non-native grey squirrel and the squirrelpox virus which they can carry, this virus doesn’t harm greys but can be deadly to reds. 75% of the UK’s remaining red squirrels are found in Scotland, and the central belt has key role to play in protecting the important highland population. You can find out more about red squirrel conservation on the Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels site.
How to get involved
All residents and visitors to the region are asked to log any sightings of both Red and Grey Squirrels into the national data base here.
Residents who have reporting red squirrels in their gardens may be asked to host a Squirrel Feeder and take part in the Autumn Surveys. We’re also looking for volunteers from the community to carry out squirrel surveys in the Carron Valley Community Woodland and to analyse the hair traps and trail camera data collected. Full training and all equipment will be provided. If you’d like to join the project team and volunteer on the surveys please get in touch with us.
We also welcome other local landowners to get involved in the project and support red squirrel populations on their land.