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squirrel control

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Re: squirrel control

Postby Dexter's Shed » Sat Jan 31, 2015 9:16 pm

Dave and Verity wrote:An alternative view:

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/ ... ne-martens


I'd be up for introducing a native back home, the only downside I can see is they don't just feed on grey squirrels, Although pine martens are carnivores, their diet is omnivorous, and they eat a variety of foods, including carrion, small mammals, birds and their eggs, invertebrates, fruits and nuts. Although pine martens are commonly referred to as nocturnal, they are frequently active during the day, especially in the summer months.
so although your woods may end up squirrel free, it may also be devoid of songbirds and small ground game which I enjoy watching, I think therefore that selective control be it either trapping or shooting, is still the way I would prefer to go
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Re: squirrel control

Postby boxerman » Sat Jan 31, 2015 10:30 pm

If introduced sensibly I'd need a little convincing that they'd devastate other populations. All the small birds and mammals currently around (other than the few introduced species) have clearly survived, and presumably thrived, side by side with the pine marten and red squirrel for around 9,500 years. I do agree tho that introducing anything can be a dangerous game even if it's a case of re-introducing a native species as it can, and will, affective current ecology. What the idea would really need is what no-one would be prepared to pay for and that's 10 years of good research based on areas such as the highlands where they still exist as a native.

Personally, I'd love to see a re-introduction of the pine marten followed in due course by the red squirrel but only after extensive research that results in measurably favourable likely outcome - it's just too easy to destroy what little we have left by careless actions. Used to love seeing the reds in the garden when I was a kid......
Phil

https://twitter.com/boxermanphil for my Badger videos
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Re: squirrel control

Postby Dexter's Shed » Fri Feb 13, 2015 4:27 am

an interesting video by the airgun show, the first part being squirrel control in a woodland, and a chat with the owner about the damage squirrels cause, likewise, I have not seen any ripe hazel nuts in our woods, even though it's manly oak and hazel, the squirrels remove them before they are ripe

http://youtu.be/4UuqVZHBfOc
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Re: squirrel control

Postby smojo » Fri Feb 13, 2015 9:48 am

Interesting video. That seems like a quick, humane and tree friendly method. One of my woodland neighbours is using shotguns and sweeping the woods with some other shooters. He offered to cover mine and at first thought "why not" but then declined at the thought of several guys blasting away into the trees with 12 bores or whatever. It would seem to me that shotguns could cause a lot of damage to the trees. He's bagged about 14 in his and some vacant plots so far. This method seems slower perhaps but more controlled and no damage to the trees. How quickly do they re-establish on average?

Incidentally I read in Smallwoods mag that goshawks predate squirrels in woodlands so they are to be encouraged. How the hell do you encourage goshawks into your woods though?
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Re: squirrel control

Postby Dave and Verity » Fri Feb 13, 2015 11:19 am

Good video, Matt is one of the most respected writers on airgun hunting there is. Worth noting how clean all the kills were, the animal didn't suffer any wounding. All were taken with head shots which would have killed the animal outright instantly.

I've used wire cage bird peanut feeders like this, the advantage being the squirrel will hang upside down feeding on a peanut presenting a very easy fairly static target.

Dave
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Re: squirrel control

Postby oldclaypaws » Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:04 pm

The shooter as Smojo says is clearly very competent and capable of a quick efficient kill which is what you'd want, the squirrel doesn't seem to know much about it. I largely accept the argument for grey squirrel control and it is interesting to see the effective way of doing it. I couldn't help noticing though that while he seemed a decent bloke, he did get rather boyishly excited whenever he'd killed one, and later described the 'thrill' of shooting game like boar. There is bound to be something in our genes that rewards us with a feeling of satisfaction from successfully capturing prey or finding food, whilst ignoring any empathy we feel for the creature, but the more sensitive part of me can't help but think that they are still living creatures which have feelings and family members as we do. Unlike President Putin, they haven't invaded Britain in an expansionist campaign to create novo-Squirreland, they were captured by us and brought here.

I wouldn't mind a carefree life of hopping around trees and eating nuts, and humans are hardly free from guilt when it comes to environmental destruction, our short sighted ignorance is wiping out numerous species and threatening the future of the whole planet. Do I hear anyone advocating a vigilante campaign of shooting illegal Amazonian or Indonesian human loggers, Asian prawn fishermen using dragnets, or industrial waste dumpers? Why not?, there would seem to be as strong a logical and environmental argument for disposing of these destructive humans clinically as there is for shooting squirrels. Is a worthless destructive human still entitled to life while an innocent animal driven merely by the need to survive is not? If you can ignore the damage they do to trees and wildlife, squirrels are rather cute and I'm uncomfortable with those who visibly enjoy killing another creature. As a shooter pal of mine says, he takes satisfaction in a necessary job well done, but not pleasure. If you just enjoy taking pot shots at a living target, that's the sort of thoughtless mentality teenagers have when shooting sparrows or songbirds for the hell of it. I shan't be going to see 'American Sniper'- it's jingoistic and glorifies war, which is not something that should be celebrated or turned into entertainment. I would hope the more experienced shooter respects his quarry and fully understands it before just pulling the trigger for 'fun'. I'd hope we have moved on from the Gladiatorial and bear-bating days when gore, violence and animal suffering were enthused over as acceptable entertainment.
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Re: squirrel control

Postby Dexter's Shed » Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:12 pm

oldclaypaws wrote:. I shan't be going to see 'American Sniper'- it's jingoistic and glorifies war,


I don't want to take this topic off track, but as it's my topic I feel I should reply on this, I too thought that about the film when I first saw it advertised, but had the chance to watch it last week, and I don't think it does, in fact it had me in tears, as it shows how war effects family life and the mind of the soldier

I love the idea you have of righting every wrong in this world first, to try a justify the need not to control squirrels, I think any woodland owner needs to decide whether to do it or not, but then end off

smojo; I too thought that about the trees, 12 gauge carries alot of shot, no doubt some will end up buried in the bark, my reason for buying two 410 shotguns, a lot less lead is contained within, hopefully that's less potential damage to the trees

I do have those type feeders set up in my woods, although I use cheap cornflakes as they work well too, using an air rifle every day for work related stuff, I'd be confident on the clean kills, but for those who would use it occasionally then that might not be the case, accidents do happen, and the quarry can move at the last second, resulting in either misses or winged hits, and you'd have a wounded squirrel trying to run, so the shotgun does have some good points, you can shoot and kill moving targets,
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Re: squirrel control

Postby oldclaypaws » Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:18 pm

Its Red not Grey, but this todays story shows how squirrels can bring out the kinder side of humans.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-31452995
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Re: squirrel control

Postby SimonFisher » Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:27 pm

Dexter's Shed wrote:an interesting video by the airgun show... http://youtu.be/4UuqVZHBfOc

Can anyone tell me what's being dropped in the bag at 14 minutes 27 seconds in?
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Re: squirrel control

Postby smojo » Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:40 pm

SimonFisher wrote:
Dexter's Shed wrote:an interesting video by the airgun show... http://youtu.be/4UuqVZHBfOc

Can anyone tell me what's being dropped in the bag at 14 minutes 27 seconds in?


Hard to tell, it's a small bird with a white belly and looks like some flecks too.
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