SSRS Conservation officer opens feeder box lid to show young boy how to set up a squirrel survey

Get involved

Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels has been working hard since 2009 to ensure red squirrels continue to have a home in Scotland. Our efforts are making a difference — in many of our project areas red squirrels are already beginning to make a comeback.

However, there’s still a lot to do. With the help of our volunteers, we are monitoring red and grey squirrel numbers across the country, managing the spread of grey squirrels in strategic areas, and inspiring community action to ensure the long-term survival of our native species.

We couldn’t do what we do without the support of our dedicated and enthusiastic volunteers. There are all sorts of other ways to get involved in the project, from food abundance surveys to helping with administrative work to volunteering your time at our events. Below is a list of just some of the things you can do to help.

Seen a squirrel? We want to hear about it! We welcome reports of red and grey squirrel sightings from anywhere in Scotland. All sightings are valuable, whether they’re from your back garden or the wider countryside. Once verified these sightings will be added to the Scottish Squirrel Database, a national record of red and grey squirrel distributions which helps form the basis of our long-term plans for red squirrel conservation.

Red Squirrel Week 2019 marked our first ever Great Scottish Squirrel Survey. This annual event saw people all over Scotland actively exploring outdoors on the lookout for squirrels to help provide us with a detailed snapshot of the situation. To find out more about the survey and how you can get involved in future events, please visit the Great Scottish Squirrel Survey campaign page.

If you create an account with our Community Hub, you can also keep a personal record of your squirrel sightings.

Submit a squirrel sighting

Your donation could help fund:

  • Standardised annual surveys to monitor red and grey squirrel populations across project areas
  • Annual testing for the spread of the Squirrelpox virus through grey squirrel populations in Scotland
  • A team of Red Squirrel Conservation Officers, Grey Squirrel Officers and a Community Engagement Officer dedicated to protecting key red squirrel populations with the help of landowners and volunteers
  • Campaigns to spread the word about the lives of red squirrels, the problems that they face and the wider appreciation of Scotland’s wildlife and work to protect it.

Donations to the Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels project are processed by the Scottish Wildlife Trust.
Choose A Specific Appeal to ensure your donation goes toward protecting Scotland’s red squirrels.

Make a donation

Scotland’s native red squirrels need your help! Only around 120,000 remain here in the wild, and without urgent action they could be lost forever. By adopting one you will be helping to secure the future of this beautiful and endangered animal.

Your plastic-free adoption pack (fulfilled by the Scottish Wildlife Trust) will include a personalised certificate, a beautiful wooden keyring, a papercraft model of the species, a fact file and much more.

Adopt a red squirrel

Take action for red squirrels where you live by joining our trap-loan scheme.

We are protecting Scotland’s red squirrels through targeted grey squirrel control in key strategic areas. For our work to be truly effective, we need to build a landscape-scale network of trapping in those places.

Whether you have a small back garden or a vast estate, you can contribute to a unified effort to prevent the spread of grey squirrels into areas where red squirrels are currently thriving, and reduce the risk of squirrelpox outbreaks in your local area.

There are a number of ways to get involved in our trap-loan scheme at different stages of the process. All our volunteers are provided with the support and training they need to participate.

Contact us or join our online Community Hub to get involved. Live in the south of Scotland? You may be able to arrange a trap loan directly via your local volunteer network. Visit our volunteer network directory to find out if there is a group operating in your area.

Landscape-scale community action is the key to the long-term survival of Scotland’s red squirrels.

The project is supporting red squirrel networks across our priority areas. The networks are led by enthusiastic and dedicated volunteers, working together to protect their local red squirrel populations. Local networks across South Scotland are also supporting each other under the banner of the Red Squirrel Forum for South Scotland.

Network directory

The help of landowners, foresters and gamekeepers is crucial to the success of Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels. Landowners in certain areas can control grey squirrels under Forestry Grant Scheme funding, or join the project’s trap-loan scheme.

Our Conservation Officers are working to help make red squirrel conservation easy for landowners in our target zones, offering detailed assistance with funding applications for grey squirrel control, as well as a trap-loan scheme with training and support for those ineligible for funding.

We can also provide advice on habitat management to benefit red squirrels.

Landowner support Forestry Grant Scheme

You can also view our current volunteering vacancies on the Scottish Wildlife Trust website


Find out more

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