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The Red Squirrel is our only native British Squirrel. Sadly, unless action is taken now, Squirrel Nutkin could become extinct from mainland England in as little as fifteen years.
The main cause of this decline is competition with the American Grey Squirrel which was introduced to Britain in 1876.
The Grey Squirrel is bigger, and out-competes the smaller Red Squirrel. Far more worrying however, is that Grey Squirrels carry the Squirrel Pox Virus, which is fatal for Reds.
We are fighting back on their behalf however!
We ask that you help us support this beautiful creature by adding a voluntary £1 to your booking.
To date, Lakelovers, and other members of the Tourism & Conservation Partnership have raised nearly £22,000 through visitors to support Red Squirrel conservation in Cumbria.
Red Squirrel reserves have been set up throughout the north of England, with the nearest at Thirlmere, just north of About Grasmere.
The reserves have been identified as areas where Red Squirrels have a natural advantage over the Greys – usually in woods where a certain type of pine cone can be found. These pine cones are smaller, and the seeds can only be eaten if your hands are tiny enough to pull them out – perfect for our smaller Reds. These reserves are then surrounded by a ‘buffer’ zone – a wider area where the presence of Grey Squirrels is carefully monitored.
By donating to help our Red Squirrels, your money is supporting:
If you see a Red Squirrel during your stay, let us know. This ‘squirrel spotting’ is really important, so we know where Red Squirrels are still living, and where feeders should be put up.