Threats to Reds

The most serious and urgent threat to our red squirrel population is interaction with the invasive, non-native grey squirrel, which has spread across the UK and caused the devastation of the UK red squirrel population.

Grey squirrels:

  • Carry disease in the form of the squirrel pox virus (SQPV), which as far as we are aware is always fatal when passed to red squirrels
  • Compete for food and habitat with red squirrels, eventually displacing them

 

Red squirrel with squirrel pox virus © Sarah McNeil

Effects of Squirrel Pox Virus

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