As an aside to my observations yesterday about the problem of the interloping Grey Squirrel comes news of how preposterous governments can become in their desperation to appease the bunny-hugger tendency when the only responsible course would be to get on with the business of culling this non-native species which does so much economic and ecological harm.

By all accounts there is a scheme to deal with greys found and captured in areas where the red squirrels are to be protected and encouraged. So far so good: it is in the execution (literally) that the Government gets it entirely wrong. Instead of sending the captured greys forthwith and painlessly to Squirrel Valhalla (a nutty sort of a place they say), daft government do-gooders take them back to England where they are released, there to wreak havoc on England’s forests, forest birds and potentially to spread the squirrelpox to areas where it is not yet endemic.

Quite why we seem unable to take hard-nosed decisions that favour our economy and ecology is a mystery, but it does reflect on the courage of our politicians who seem these days unable or unwilling to take any decision which is in the national interest but unpopular.

Well, at the risk of having to deploy columnar troops to defend the realm, I reckon we should all be better off without this interloper and all the better for the restoration of our native red squirrel to its place in our nature’s pantheon. And a very valuable industry would be rid of one of its most serious enemies.

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