Welcome to the The Mearns Regional Network Group

This is a new community group formed in 2018 and works closely with the North East and Tayside Saving Scotland’s Red Squirrels teams. The aim is to protect the thriving red squirrel populations across the Mearns and protect the Highland Line from grey squirrel incursion.

The Mearns is a key area for red squirrel conservation and the weakest point in the Highland Line defence due to the low lying land. It sits at the front line between the dispersing grey squirrel population from the south and the northern, isolated grey squirrel population in Aberdeen City. It is vital that the community group prevent grey squirrels from moving north as they could carry the Squirrel Pox virus which is harmless to grey squirrels but fatal to red squirrels. There is currently no Squirrel Pox in the north east region and we’re working hard to keep it that way.

Residents across the region monitor squirrel populations throughout the year using feeder boxes and report any grey squirrel sightings on the website for the north east team to respond to. Some members are trained to then remove grey squirrels from contact with reds by live trapping and humane dispatch.

The group also raise awareness in the area, encouraging the communities to report all squirrel sightings onto the website and become “squirrel spotters” across the region to protect both their local red squirrels but also the Highland stronghold.