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Calling all Keyboard Warriors

We may be based in the Scottish Borders, but in this connected world our influence can extend way beyond these boundaries. And you can help us to spread the word.

Many garden centres around the UK have started selling squirrel feeders. Now feeding our red squirrels is a laudable venture, but in those areas where greys and reds may share the same feeder, it's a recipe for disaster.

As you will be aware, grey squirrels can carry the pox, which doesn't affect them, but is almost always fatal to the reds. And the mere act of a grey feeding at the same station as a red can be all it takes to pass it on.

So, we have begun contacting retailers and wholesalers in the hope that they can inform their customers of this threat and we have recommended some text for them to use (see below). Recently we spoke to the Manager at Mayfields Garden Centre in Kelso and she immediately took their squirrel feeders off sale and contacted Klondyke head office with our advice. Other online retailers have similarly placed a warning on their product page, but there are lots of others we haven't yet tracked down.

And that's why we are seeking your help.

If any of you see a squirrel feeder for sale either in a shop or online and there's no information about what to do if reds and greys frequent the same area, please let them know that they should be warning their customers (see the wording below)...

"If you live near to, or in an area where both red and grey squirrels frequent, please consider the following advice. If red squirrels are present in your area, and grey squirrels begin visiting your garden, we advise stopping feeding immediately to prevent disease transmission. Feeding stations create high risk of disease spread, including squirrelpox virus which does not affect greys (or humans), but is sadly deadly to reds. For more information on the two species visit"

If you do speak to a supplier or email them, please do let us know by email ( We don't have the resources to do this ourselves, but with your help we can make a difference, and not just in our project area!

Thank you

The entire team at Central Borders Red Squirrel Network

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