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Pest Name: Grey Squirrel - Sciurus carolinensis

Markings: Grey with a whiter belly, but grey turns browner in summer.  Red squirrels have easily visible ear tufts, and are much redder and smaller.

Location: Becoming widespread throughout Britain.

Detection: Sightings of live animals, droppings, bark stripping, kibbled cones/nuts, scattered food remains, dreys, tracks (footprints) in soft mud or snow.

General Information:

Size - about 25 cm or so.  Tail nearly as long as body.  Weight around 500g.

Biology: Squirrels are well known to most of us, and are easily recognised.  They can be quite prolific in their reproduction, with two breeding seasons per year.  After a gestation period of six and a half weeks (45 days), the first litter is born in late February or early March.  A Typical litter contains 3 or 4 young.  If a second litter is born, it usually occurs at the end of June or into July.  The young are weaned at about 10 weeks old, and leave the nest soon after.

The squirrel nest is known as a drey, and is made of twigs and leaves, and can sometimes be lined with grass.  When dreys are made in roof spaces, the squirrels will gather all manner of fabrics, gnawed cardboard etc, to act as nesting materials.

Squirrels have a surprisingly wide and varied diet, eating foods such as fruits, nuts, seeds, plant and tree buds, fungi, and new shoots.  They will also take birds' eggs and even the nestlings.  Obviously, bird food etc put out in gardens becomes an easy target, but because many people like squirrels, the food is put out specifically for them.

Reasons for Control:
They can chew wiring in the loft which may cause a fire, also chew through rafters and plastic pipes which may cause flooding

Wasps & Hornets have a potentially fatal sting

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Successful bird spiking allowing use of this area again.

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Working on rodent control near waterways

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