Number of Red Squirrels Increase After 140 Years
According to a new study, the number of red squirrels is rising after decades of decline in the UK.
The indigenous red squirrels were almost wiped out after the introduction of the greys from North America in the 19th century.
The number of these squirrels sharply declined from around 3.5 million to 1, 20,000 with the population as low as 15,000 in England. This happened due to the introduction of grey squirrels.
This native species have survived in only a few places in the north of England, the Isle of Wight and Scotland.
The numbers of the red squirrels were getting dangerously low because of a pox virus carried by the grey squirrels which is similar to myxomatosis. Also the greys have a superior adaptability than the reds.
According to the survey of 300 sites, as compared to the same period last year, it has been found that the number of squirrels have increased by 7% in spring 2013.
It is also found by the conservative group that the number of grey squirrels has declined by 18% during the same period of time.
The native species survived in only a few pockets in the north of England, the Isle of Wight and Scotland.
It is for the first time in so many years that the count of red squirrels has shown an increase in numbers.