Squirrels and what can you do about them?

There are two species of Squirrel present in the United Kingdom, the Red Squirrel (Sciurus vulgaris) and the more common Grey Squirrel (Sciurus carolinensis). The native species in the UK is the Red Squirrel, however, in 1876 the first Grey Squirrels were introduced to the United Kingdom from America.

The introduction of the Grey Squirrel has been linked with the large decline in the population of the Red Squirrels, and the Red Squirrel is now protected by law. The Grey Squirrel is a much larger animal than the native Red Squirrel, and they have competed for the same environment and diet. Another factor thought to be responsible for the decline of the Red Squirrel is squirrel pox. Squirrel pox is a disease that causes death in Red Squirrels but the Grey Squirrels have antibodies which means that it doesn’t affect them.

Grey Squirrel

The Grey Squirrels have only been in the UK for around 150 years, but they have been extremely successful and can cause a considerable nuisance as a pest. There are many reasons why it may be necessary to control to Grey Squirrels such as:

  • Damage to building, including timbers and plumbing. They have even been known to chew through wiring and cause house fires!
  • Damage to gardens and parks by stripping bark and taking fruit, cereal and vegetables.
  • Damage to bird populations by stealing food and taking eggs and young birds.

The control of Grey Squirrels is usually by trapping and subsequent proofing of premises to prevent further entry into buildings. Once trapped, Grey Squirrels must be humanely dispatched, as it is against the law (Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981) to release them into the wild as they are non-native species.

If you would like more information about the services we offer regarding Grey Squirrels, get in touch with Pest Solution’s friendly and knowledgeable staff by clicking here.

Combining an extensive knowledge of pests and a commitment to safe procedures, Pest Solution offers a range of pest control training that you can trust.