Red Squirrel #4 - Cute Personified by imprezoid

Red Squirrel #4 - Cute Personified

This is a photo of a red squirrel, taken at the British Wildlife Centre (www.britishwildlifecentre.co.uk).

Pausing while eating a nut, he's very cute :-)

The red squirrel is protected in most of Europe, as it is listed in Appendix III of the Bern Convention; it is listed as Least Concern on the IUCN Red List. In some areas it is abundant and is hunted for its fur. Although not thought to be under any threat worldwide, the red squirrel has drastically reduced in number in the United Kingdom. Fewer than 140,000 individuals are thought to be left, approximately 85% of which are in Scotland. This population decrease is often ascribed to the introduction of the eastern grey squirrel from North America, but the loss and fragmentation of its native woodland habitat has also played a major role.

Eradication of the grey squirrel from the North Wales Island of Anglesey began in January 1998. This facilitated the natural recovery of the small remnant red squirrel population and was followed by the successful reintroduction of the red squirrel into the pine stands of Newborough Forest. Subsequent reintroductions into broadleaved woodland followed and today the island has the single largest red squirrel population in Wales. Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour is also populated by exclusively red squirrels (approximately 200 individuals).

Mainland initiatives in Southern Scotland and the North of England also rely upon grey squirrel control as the cornerstone of red squirrel conservation strategy. A local programme known as the "North East Scotland Biodiversity Partnership", an element of the national Biodiversity Action Plan has subsequently been established. This programme is administered by the Grampian Squirrel Society, with an aim of protecting the red squirrel; the programme centres on the Banchory and Cults areas. In 2008, the Scottish Wildlife Trust announced a four year project which commenced in the spring of 2009 called "Saving Scotland's Red Squirrels".

Other notable projects include red squirrel projects in the Greenfield Forest, including the buffer zones of Mallerstang, Garsdale and Widdale; the Northumberland Kielder Forest Project; and within the National Trust reserve in Formby. These projects were originally part of the Save Our Squirrels campaign that aimed to protect Red Squirrels in the north of England. but now form part of a five year Government project called ‘Red Squirrels Northern England’. Outside the UK and Ireland, the threat from the eastern grey squirrel comes from a population in Piedmont, Italy, where two pairs escaped from captivity in 1948. A significant drop in red squirrel populations in the area has been observed since 1970, and it is feared that the eastern grey squirrel may expand into the rest of Europe.
I love how animated and full of "action" this shot is! Usually squirrels freeze and stare, but this is great! And we don't have these red squirrels near me, so cool to see one!
June 8th, 2012  
That's adorable---another FAV!
June 8th, 2012  
Excellent capture. He is really cute.
June 8th, 2012  
Really cute. I think he is smiling.
June 8th, 2012  
The great expression you caught really makes the pic! I have never seen a grey squirrel in France and I don't know if some have come already, but what I know is that in areas where I sometimes saw red squirrels when I was a kid, I hardly see some now :-)
June 8th, 2012  
Aww sooo cute! Beautiful
June 9th, 2012  
Much cuter thatn there grey alternatives. We used to live on the IOW and they were common there. Lovely picture
June 10th, 2012  
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