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Red Squirrel

Volume 404: debated on Thursday 8 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how much his Department has spent on programmes run (a) by his Department and (b) by environmental organisations related to the preservation of red squirrel populations in each of the last five years. [110337]

I have been asked to reply.The Department through English Nature have spent £125,602 over the past five years. The main projects have been:

Thetford Forest—grey squirrel management and red squirrel reintroductions. Joint project with the Forestry Commission.
Feasibility study for the development of a vaccine against squirrel parapoxvirus.
Preparation of management plans for priority woodlands in northern England. Joint project with the Forestry Commission.
Isle of Wight project. Partnership with Wight Wildlife, Forestry Commission and others to link fragmented woodland on the Isle of Wight to benefit squirrels.

The Forestry Commission, who are the lead partners for the Red Squirrel Species Action Plan have spent the following amounts in activities related to enhancing the status of this species.

£000

FC England

FR (GB)1

1998–9938.2116.0
1999–200048.395.5
2000–0146.678.5
2001–0252.832.6
2002–0373.212.0
Total259.1334.6

1FR is a FB Agency of the FC

Note:

In addition the FC has grant aided the establishment of new woodlands to link fragmented woodland on the Isle of Wight. The expenditure was £81.6k in 2001–02 and £56.7k in 2002–03.