The grey squirrel is regarded as an invasive non-native species and has no protection under the Wildlife and Countryside Act (1981). They are listed in the IUCN international list of 100 worst invasive non-native species, which highlights the damage that grey squirrels cause to our native flora and fauna; a problem severe enough to be recognised at a level of global significance.
It is illegal to release a grey squirrel into the wild, or allow one to escape.
RSNE advocates and practices humane grey culling, targeted in areas where it will directly benefit red squirrel populations.
If you are controlling grey squirrels in northern England and are not already working with a local squirrel group, it would be very helpful if you could keep records of what you catch, where and how much time it took, and send that information to us. We have special forms available to make this easier and to ensure we get the information most needed. Please do contact us if you are interested in sharing your achievements. The record forms are available to download below. One is an Excel spreadsheet and is ideal when several sites are covered. The other form is a PDF designed for printing and filling out by hand and is a good alternative to the Excel spreadsheet when records are being submitted for only a small number of sites.
RSNE staff can provide full training and advice on grey control. Private land owners in northern England are urged to get in touch to discuss the issue of grey squirrel control. Please do contact us!
There are many volunteer groups that play an active and vital role in grey control at a local level. These groups can often provide assistance with grey control such as training and provision of traps. Northern Red Squirrels (NRS) is an umbrella organisation representing the local red squirrel conservation groups.