Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Red Squirrel

I saw my first squirrel yesterday!I should qualify that by saying I have seen lots of them in parks in London and even a couple in the grounds of the little church near ground zero in New York but I had never seen a squirrel in my own country!I was visiting a friend who lives on a farm just outside the city and as I drove down the drive a red squirrel hopped across the drive in front of me and shimmied up a tree to look down at me. I said it to my friend who told me there had been two of them but one had been killed by a dog, they thought the other one had gone so were delighted to know he was back. I did not have my camera with me to take a photo so had to find one online,I also looked up some information on our native Red squirrel

Irish Red squirrel under threat
Tuesday, 9 October 2007 22:18
A new report says Ireland's native red squirrel could be wiped out by a virus carried by the grey squirrel.

The report of the Irish Squirrel Survey 2007, which was launched today, also calls for the protection of the red squirrel and for the control of grey squirrel populations.

Over the past decade the grey squirrel has spread to 26 counties throughout Ireland.

It is now found west of the Shannon, in Leitrim and Roscommon, where it had not previously been found.

The red squirrel is extinct in Meath, Westmeath, Carlow and Kilkenny.

The report warns that if the grey squirrel is left unchecked the hardwood industry and the conservation of native woodlands could suffer.

There are also concerns about a virus that could wipe out the red squirrel.

The report says action is needed to conserve red squirrel numbers, and that grey squirrel controls need to be carried out.
Six One News: Emma O Kelly, Education & Science Correspondent, reports that the grey squirrel is killing off its red cousin
Nine News: Emma O Kelly, Education & Science Correspondent, reports that the Grey Squirrel could be lethal to other squirrels & Ireland's broadleaf trees
Morning Ireland: Cian McCormack reports on the demise of the red squirrel, which is threatened with extinction by the grey squirrel
Story from RTÉ News:
The following link will show a news programme about the red Squirrel and the dangers it faces today (click on The Six One News for audio visual),null,230


Dirt Princess said...

Very interesting. We have several types of squirrells here. They are certainly not in danger here. There are half a million in my back yard..LOL! We have gray squirrells, flying squirrells, and fox squirrells. And yes the flying squirrells do fly! They have small flaps of skin that help them soar tree to tree. My dad had one as a pet when he was very young. He kept it in his pocket!!! He said all the kids had them. They took them to school and everywhere else they went!

ga.farmwoman said...

The red squirrel is cute! We don't have the red ones here but I think every other kind. Everywhere. They came by bunches to eat my pears this fall. I do believe they spread the word about the pears. Then Jill(the Basset Hound) started her around the clock watch of the pear trees. Jill also discovered she loved to eat pears too.

Loved reading about the Irish Red squirrels. I do hope they don't get wiped out by the virus. They are beautiful.

Have a great day.

Gary Jen and Ruby said...

It's a rare pleasure indeed to set your eyes on a red squirrell. I remember seeing plenty as a child, bit not in the last 40 years.

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

How interesting! It sure is a cute type. We have lots of gray squirrels here. They've been stealing the apples left on the tree and running off with them.

Ann said...

Red squirrels are so pretty, wish we had them visiting our garden as much as we get the greys, it would be a lovely sight but I don't think there are any around here at all.

I made your fruit cake Peggy, it is delicious - thanks for the recipe.

Jo said...

Lovely; this is the first [squirrel] I've ever seen. I do hope they're not wiped out by the grey squirrel. Do you think anything is being done by Nature conservation since those news reports and findings two years ago?

mangocheeks said...

Liking the new header - very seasonal!

I don't think I have ever seen red squirrel. You were so fortunate to be there at the right time. Somthing truly to share :D

W. Latane Barton said...

How neat.. you getting to see a squirrel right in front of you. Isn't that always the way of it.. you see something you want a picture of and there's not a camera in sight.

Scarlett the Heavenly Healer said...

Red squirrels in London Parks? Where???
You are so lucky. I live in London but have only ever seen red squirrels when visiting my sister in Scotland.... and how interesting to read that mangocheeks, who lives in Scotland, has never seen a red squirrel !!

Peggy said...

Squirrels seem to abound everywhere but we do not see a lot of them in Ireland.I live on the outskirts of a city so had never actually seen one in my own country!
I should have said I had seen grey ones in London and NY.

Aanee @ Flower Delivery Dublin said...

I had a similar experience a few years back.
I was in Kilkenny where I spotted one of those cute red squirrells.
I thought the exact same thing - I haven't seen one in my own country till now.

They are beautiful and hoopefully they grow in numbers in the future.

Aanee xxxx
Letterkenny Flower Shop