Squirrel in tree

A meeting was held on 14th June 2012 in Pinwherry Community Hall. The guest speakers were Meryl Norris of the  Ayrshire Rivers Trust and Bruce Davidson representing the Ayrshire Red Squirrel Group. Meryl Norris is employed by the Ayrshire Rivers Trust to carry forward the Carrick Invasive Species Project – the aim of which is to raise awareness of the issues associated with the spread of problem species such as Japanese Knotweed. They also cull and will work alongside any red squirrel preservation initiative set up as a result. General discussion followed preservation of the reds in the Stinchar Valley. The main points central to this aim were listed as:

  • Shooting and trapping the greys
  • Taking blood samples of the greys
  • Reporting sightings of both reds and greys (the importance of this cannot be overstated)
  • Updating the sightings map (see above, one cannot happen without the other).

Following this discussion, it was agreed that some of the objectives to be undertaken include:

  • Identifying local strongholds
  • Mapping and identify buff er zones
  • Contacting landowners and farmers for support
  • Asking the individual community councils represented on the Carrick Community Councils Forum to survey their areas and map any red squirrel strongholds present
  • Looking at the possibility of appointing a grey squirrel control offi cer for the area
  • Putting regular updates in the Stinchar Valley Mag