Nest box use by red squirrels Sciurus vulgaris at Formby National Trust Reserve, Lancashire, England
Published source details
Shuttleworth C.M. (1999) The use of nest boxes by the red squirrel Sciurus vulgaris in a coniferous habitat. Mammal Review, 29, 61-66
Published source details Shuttleworth C.M. (1999) The use of nest boxes by the red squirrel Sciurus vulgaris in a coniferous habitat. Mammal Review, 29, 61-66
This study is summarised as evidence for the following.
Provide artificial dens or nest boxes on treesAction Link
Provide artificial dens or nest boxes on trees
A study in 1994–1997 in a coniferous forest in Lancashire, UK (Shuttleworth 1999) found that red squirrels Sciurus vulgaris used all and bred in some nest boxes. Red squirrels used all boxes within the first three months of placement and used 16-26% of boxes for breeding each year. There was no significant difference in the use of large (18 boxes) and small nest boxes (10 boxes) by breeding females, or in the size of litters in large (2.7 young) and small (2.9) boxes. All age groups and both sexes used boxes. The study site was dominated by Scots pine Pinus sylvestris and Corsican pine Pinus nigra and contained a high density of red squirrels (3.5–4/ha in the spring). Three groups of five small (27 × 30.5 × 48 cm) and five large (32 × 35.5 × 56 cm) timber nest boxes were attached to pine trees a height of 5–8 m in February 1994. Boxes were 50 m apart and filled with hay. In 1995, eight additional large boxes were added. Boxes were waterproofed and had a 7.5-cm-diameter entrance. Boxes were checked monthly from summer 1994 to summer 1997.