Huge success for red squirrels and HLF

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RSST is delighted to continue its support of SSRS (Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels) who are currently working on the planning and implementation of the hugely successful HLF (Heritage Lottery Fund) grant for developing community based rapid response teams. The project will deliver key national conservation objectives with the aim of protecting red squirrels through communication, education and conservation activities.

RSST remains a partner of the Scottish national red squirrel project, Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels, bringing the added advantage of direct engagement with the UK Squirrel Accord. This was of particular value in the success of the SSRS bid for a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant as the Squirrel Accord is recognized by HLF as the advisory body providing professional and impartial advice in the areas of squirrel conservation, squirrel control and squirrel related woodland management: the RSST representative on the SSRS board was able to act as mentor in crafting the successful bid. Other partners include Scottish Wildlife Trust, Scottish Natural Heritage, Forestry Commission Scotland and the Scottish Rural Property Association.

The community based teams will be created involving a great number of volunteers who will be trained to conserve key red squirrel populations threatened by their interaction with non-native grey squirrels. These volunteers will be supported by the partner organisation staff , building the large networks of red squirrel champions essential for conservation success. The afore mentioned partners will maintain grey free habitat where it already exists. All the conservation work will be rigorously monitored , contributing to strong scientific research and evaluation to be undertaken by academic partners.