Learn all about red squirrels with Hazel!
Willow loves exploring Wilderville woods and having adventures with her animal companion, Hazel the red squirrel. They both know how important it is to protect the woodland, especially given it’s Hazel’s home!
Read on to find out more about red squirrel and take our quiz at the end to test your knowledge!
Did you know there are two types of squirrels in the UK?
Grey squirrels are very common, there are over 2 million in the UK! You’ve probably seen them in the park, in the school playground or in your garden.
Red squirrels are less common. They prefer to live in wilder areas, further away from towns and cities. Most red squirrels live in Scotland. But you can also see them in Wales, Northern Ireland or parts of Northern England like Northumberland and Cumbria.
Red squirrels and grey squirrels can’t live together because they compete for food and resources. Red squirrels’ habitats are also under threat. They like to live in woodlands and areas with lots of Conifer trees.
Red squirrels are close to becoming endangered. That means there are less of them in the wild than there used to be. If we don’t find ways to help increase the population, they could become extinct.
Did you know…
• Squirrels are mostly vegetarian, they like to eat seeds, hazelnuts and acorns.
• Red squirrels usually have about 4-6 babies a year, their young are called kittens!
• A squirrel’s teeth never stop growing. This stops them getting worn down from all the constant gnawing, chewing and chomping!
• The red squirrel is a pretty good swimmer!
What is being done to help red squirrels?
There are lots of wildlife charities and organisations working to help red squirrels and take care of the woods that they live in. They do this in lots of different ways. Some raise awareness about the importance of red squirrels. Others work to protect the areas red squirrels live in and make sure these habitats aren’t destroyed or damaged. This is called conservation.
Conservation means carefully preserving or protecting something.
Imagine you’ve had a picnic with your family and friends in a beautiful forest. When you leave, you make sure to pick up all your litter and leave the forest exactly as you found it. This is an act of conservation because you’re protecting the area and the wildlife in it!
How can I help red squirrels?
When an animal is endangered, it is good to know how many there are left. This helps scientists and experts get a better understanding of the issue. If you live in area with red squirrels, then they need your help!
If you think you’ve spotted a red squirrel in your area or maybe on holiday – you can report it.
Report seeing a red squirrel in…
How can I help the wildlife in my area?
There are lots of ways you can help the living things near you! One of the simplest is to leave water out for animals to drink from. Birds, squirrels, hedgehogs, insects and butterflies like to have easy access to water for drinking and bathing. They’ll be especially grateful during the summer!
Simply place a shallow bowl or container on the ground near a bush or a tree. Put a few pebbles or stones in the bottom to help the wildlife hop in and out.
There are also more ideas on our activities page. Check out this activity to make a hanging bird feeder!