A CAMPAIGN to bring red squirrels back to the Troutbeck valley is sho-wing signs of success.
The first red in years was seen running towards one of the Westmorland Red Squirrel Society’s volun-teers in Troutbeck Bridge.
Now another has been spotted just off the Kirkstone Road in Trout-beck Park.
Jayne Musson, the local who saw the red squirrel, was ecstatic.
“We have been encour-aging residents to report and control grey squirrels,” she said.
“I and other local people, have also raised money from plant sales and other events to promote and finance efforts to get reds back in our valley.
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“It’s so encouraging to see such positive results and makes us confident that we can turn Westmorland red once more.”
Bob Cartwright, trustee and secretary of the society added: “Jayne and her neighbours really deserve the reward of the reds’ return as they’ve been tireless in their efforts to have them back.
“I would also pay tribute to Cumbria’s Central Lakes neighbourhood forum, who recently gave a grant to buy trail cameras, and to the Lake District National Park Authority, which grant-aided the project that has enabled us to conduct a targeted programme of grey squirrel control in Trout-beck, Kentmere and Long-sleddale.
“We know that local people and visitors alike love to see our native red squirrels and that tourism benefits from their survival in south Cumbria.
“All the evidence is pointing to the fact that co-ordinated grey control and good local information about where the squirrels are is allowing red squirrel populations to recover.”
Lake District National Park ranger Steve Tatlock, said: “Red squirrels are one of our priority species, so the sightings in Troutbeck are great news.
“Not only are they an important part of a balanced eco-system, they bring pleasure to all who see them, including our many visitors who are vital to the local economy.”