Following confirmation that a Gwynedd red squirrel died from the highly infectious squirrel pox virus, we have found two suspected cases of the infection. This includes a young female found dead in Coed Mor near the Britannia bridge with a large lesion on the face. The body has been sent to Animal Plant Health Agency labs for a full post mortem and histological examination. We await results to know whether or not the squirrel pox virus is present.
Advice to the public is:
1. Please report an dead or dying red squirrels; including road deaths as soon as possible.
2. Clean feeders regularly and apply an anti-viral wash/spray or rinse well with warm soapy water.
3. It may be wise to cease feeding red squirrels altogether, as at this time of year there are plenty of wild foods available. Alternatively, you can simply scatter small amounts of food on the ground so that animals are no longer congregating at a wooden feeder, but still visit your garden.
4. Please look carefully at red squirrels visiting your garden, or that you may see in woodlands elsewhere, and report any that seem sluggish and/or that have scabs, blisters or grazes on the feet, nose, mouth and/or eyes. IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT ANY INFECTED RED SQUIRRELS ARE REMOVED as they are a huge source of infection to other animals.