Go nuts for ‘reds’ during Squirreltober

Glens Red Squirrel Group have designated this month as 'Squirreltober'.
Glens Red Squirrel Group have designated this month as 'Squirreltober'.

Red Squirrels have a National Red Squirrel week but the Glens Red Squirrel Group (GRSG), think a week is too short to tell the full story of their ‘Reds’ and have decided October is Squirreltober.

They want everyone to join the GRSG for a whole month, to find out more about Red Squirrels in the Glens and have organised walks, talks, and storytelling and will be opening the Hide at set times.

The events include: Cregagh Wood Hide, Glendun, opening from 8.30-10am opening. 8:30am -10am on October 14 and on October 28; a Red Squirrel talk at Cushendall Library on October 17, from 6.30-7.30pm; Ballycastle Forest Walk on October 21, meeting at forest car park at the bottom of Fairhill Street at 11am in partnership with The Ghosts in the Glens Festival; Squirrel information table with Storywalk at Glenariff Forest on October 22, as part of The Ghosts in the Glens Festival, meeting at Laragh Lodge at 11am; and a Glenarm Forest Walk on October 29 from the main entrance car park, 11am.

Red squirrel populations have declined since the introduction of the grey squirrel n 1876 and it is now thought there are less than 140,000 red squirrels left in the UK. Red squirrels are afforded the highest level of protection under UK law in the Wildlife and Countryside Act, 1981 (The Wildlife & Countryside (NI) Order 1985). Significant progress has been made by local and regional red squirrel conservation initiatives in halting the decline of the red squirrel populations and controlling the spread of grey squirrel populations, but they are not safe yet - constant conservation effort is likely to be needed for as long as grey squirrels are present.