the big leap flea
The Big Leap
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How Long Does Pest Control Take?
the big leap flea
The Big Leap
pest control rat
How Long Does Pest Control Take?

Pest Control And Squirrel Pox


What Is Squirrel Pox?

 Squirrel pox, also known as squirrel pox virus or SQPV, is a disease that affects both red and grey squirrels in the UK. The virus is transmitted by biting insects, such as fleas and ticks, and causes skin lesions and ulcers on the face, paws, and genitals of infected squirrels.

While grey squirrels can develop an immune response to the virus, red squirrels are highly susceptible to infection and often die within two weeks of contracting the disease. This has led to concern among conservationists, as grey squirrels are considered a pest in the UK and their presence has been linked to the decline of red squirrel populations.

 Squirrel pox was first detected in the UK in the 1980s, and since then, it has become a significant threat to both red and grey squirrels. According to the Red Squirrel Survival Trust, squirrel pox has been responsible for the decline of red squirrel populations in several areas of the UK, including Scotland, Cumbria, and Northumberland.

Pest control plays a significant role in managing squirrel pox, largely through efforts to control the grey squirrel population. Here's how pest control contributes to mitigating the issue:

Population Control of Grey Squirrels

By reducing the number of grey squirrels, pest control measures decrease the chances of squirrel pox being transmitted to red squirrels. Various methods, including trapping and humane culling, these are employed to control grey squirrel numbers in areas where red squirrels are present.

Habitat Management

Pest control is not just about reducing numbers but also involves managing habitats to favour red squirrels over greys. This can include the planting of certain types of trees that are more beneficial to red squirrels or the creation of barriers to limit grey squirrel movement.

Public Awareness and Education

Part of effective pest control involves educating the public about the importance of not feeding grey squirrels, particularly in areas where red squirrels are present, as this can attract greys and increase the risk of disease transmission.

Vaccination and Research

While currently more in the realm of conservation and scientific research than direct pest control, efforts to develop a vaccine against squirrel pox for red squirrels are ongoing. Pest control can support these efforts by helping to monitor squirrel populations and distribute vaccines once they become available.

Legal Measures and Policy Support

Pest control is supported by legal measures and policies that protect red squirrels and control grey populations. This includes wildlife protection laws and regulations that limit the introduction and spread of non-native species.

By addressing the grey squirrel population and its impact on the spread of squirrel pox, pest control measures contribute significantly to the conservation of the native red squirrel population in the UK. These efforts are part of a broader strategy that includes habitat management, public education, and scientific research aimed at ensuring the survival and recovery of red squirrels in their natural habitat.

If you are experiencing a problem with squirrels or any other pest, don't hesitate to get in contact with us today!

If you have a problem with any other type of pest contact that needs professional treatment contact us below or call us on 07443 052851, and our experienced, friendly team will offer advice and provide an effective solution.