Red Squirrel Day a huge success

Charlotte Killen finding a clue in treasure hunt during the Red Squirrel Group event at the weekend.

Charlotte Killen finding a clue in treasure hunt during the Red Squirrel Group event at the weekend.

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North West Red Squirrel group were delighted with the attendance of over 60 people at their Red Squirrel Day on Saturday at Muff Glen, Eglinton.

A guided walk was led by members Dermott McLaughlin and Christine Cassidy and a Treasure Hunt allowed people to explore and learn interesting facts about the native red squirrel. Fruit and seeds were gathered along the route and there was much excitement when red squirrels were spotted high up in the trees and at one of the feeding stations managed by the group.

Kathryn Parkhill with her leaf squirrel picture.

Kathryn Parkhill with her leaf squirrel picture.

On return from the walk, the children took part in quizzes and made squirrel pictures from leaves. Refreshments were provided and contributed to the great day out. Chris Sherrard, a local taxidermist, donated a red squirrel to the group. The red squirrel had sadly been killed on the road in Ballykelly.

North West Red Squirrel group are undertaking a conservation project in Muff Glen to monitor and protect the red squirrel.

Anyone interested in getting involved should contact the secretary Pam Hardeman at pam.hardeman@btinternet.com.

A guest at the event was Foyle MLA Gary Middleton who is to champion the Red Squirrel.

“The work of the environment committee is wide ranging and has a remit which covers many different aspects of the environment,” he said.

“This latest initiative by the environment committee is very welcome and it follows from the successful first ever NI environment week 2015.

“There are many species in danger throughout our constituencies, however I am delighted to champion the red squirrel within my own constituency in Foyle. I was delighted to attend the Red Squirrel day held at Muff Glen, Eglinton, on Saturday, where there was an excellent turnout of people, who came along to get a better understanding of how vital it is to protect and conserve this very special woodland animal.

“I look forward to working with the North West Red Squirrel Group over the months ahead and to provide a link between them and the environment committee.”