Red squirrel conservation: The assessment of a reintroduction experiment

Lorenzo Fornasari, Paola Casale, Luc Wauters

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The methods used to assess a red squirrel Sciurus vulgaris reintroduction experiment at Parco Groane, northern Italy, are described. Population size at the removal site was estimated (c. 2400 squirrels) using drey counts, to evaluate the effect of removing animals for reintroduction. Suitability of the release site was investigated in two ways: (1) beforehand, by comparing tree seed abundance with that at the removal site, (2) retrospectively, by comparing drey-site choice between removal and release site. Increase and dispersion of the reintroduced population were monitored using drey counts and searching for species-specific feeding signs. Although only eight squirrels could be released (four males, four females), the experiment was successful and by 1996 all wooded habitats at Parco Groane were inhabited by squirrels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)163-167
Number of pages5
JournalItalian Journal of Zoology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Jun 1997


  • Conservation
  • Drey counts
  • Food abundance
  • Red squirrel
  • Reintroduction

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology


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