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Last updated on July 16th, 2017 at 09:37 am
Wherever one stands on the issue of red squirrels v. gray squirrels, it’s difficult to disagree with this elemental gray squirrel truth:
They are simply better at the job of being squirrels.
Please keep comments civilised; the last time this fraught matter came up, we got slammed by Media Watch and two commenters were sent to trial at The Hague.
(Via Rich Stadnik)
Mmmm… Brunswick Stew…Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 2007 10 07 at 09:09 AM • permalink
So, “Deliberately killing a red squirrel or disturbing its nest, called a drey, is a crime,” while killing Native Americans is actively encouraged? Not only is this highly questionable on moral grounds, it is perhaps indicative of differences in the two societies: meritocracy versus ancestor worship. In America newcomers who work hard and succeed are celebrated; in Britain it appears that such hardworking successful on merits newcomers are to be crushed in favor those with the right historical connections.
I see that the British upper classes have replaced the banned foxhunting with grey squirrel hunting, an activity that is kindly being funded by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
Then there’s “Sue Southworth … holding a meeting in her home in Cockermouth” and that’s all I’m going to say about that.
When I was young, and it was not unPC to let pre-teen children (under adult supervision) learn about firearms, the teachers at my boarding school used to take the children out squirrel-shooting. Only the greys though, the reds were left strictly alone.
It was a very old-fashioned school, even for 1968.
The world has changed, and such pastimes, along with the red squirrel in those areas, are now extinct, as is the school itself.
I can’t say the UK has been improved by any of those occurrences.
Ahh, more American hedgemony. If I may make a suggestion.
1. Start with a bait pile of shelled corn.
2. Add a youngster in the 9 – 12 yr. range with a 22. rifle.
3. Shoot grey squirrels in the head as they come to feed on the corn.
4. Repeat as needed across England.
This process has several benefits. Young people develop some appreciation of firearm handling and safety. Squirrel populations are reduced. Food is procured in the traditional manner. And Britons , at least some of the younger ones, get the opportunity to Harden The F%ck Up. As one of you Aussies so gloriously put it.
Fuck the Red Squirrel! Fuck-it I say!
I have no sympathy for no free-loading, low skills, socialist loving, limey promoted fur-ball.
Long live the American invader!
Payback for the freaking English Ivy that is taking over my back yard.Posted by joe bagadonuts on 2007 10 07 at 10:16 AM • permalink
I think the key solution to the gray squirrel problem in Britain is simple. Please note this key piece of evidence (emphasis is mine):
They spread quickly. By 1910, they were spotted in Woburn, about 50 miles to the northwest of London, and they reached Wales, 150 miles away, by the mid-1920s. Few Britons were pleased, but little was done about the problem. It was the more numerous native red squirrel that was in the rifle sights of the time. In the early decades of the century, for instance, a hunting association called the Highland Squirrel Club killed 82,000 red squirrels, in part to protect the timber industry. (Squirrels damage trees by stripping off the bark.)
The solution (alluded to by rhhardin earlier) is to permit gun ownership and hunting in England once again. This will allow a significant blow against the imperialistic American gray squirrels, and give the kindler, gentler British red squirrels a chance to recover their native lands.
Think of it as the American Revolution in reverse, with the decisive battles being fought in England against the occupation forces of the American Army. All those anti-American types in Britain will be clamoring to join the ranks of the Red Army.
Er, I meant Red Squirrel Army, and American Squirrel Army, of course.Posted by The_Real_JeffS on 2007 10 07 at 10:20 AM • permalink
gray squirrels, an American import, have been overtaking Britain’s native red squirrels and claiming their territory. The grays have moved up from the south of England, thinning out the reds along the way.
OMG, what a perfect analogy for free market principles pervading the UK in the last 25 years. I wonder if the grey squirrels have a matriarch named Thatcher the Squirrel?Posted by Shaky Barnes on 2007 10 07 at 11:14 AM • permalink
I have a photo of a black squirrel and that’s all the squirrel color I have. Am I racist?
Shame on the Brits for persecuting grey squirrels that only seek a better life and want to feed their families. Not very multicultural, I must say.Posted by Mystery Meat on 2007 10 07 at 12:42 PM • permalink
- Won’t Muslim squirrels cut off your nuts? Maybe Media Watch should look for a new host through them?
/shameless attempt to get quoted on MWPosted by andycanuck on 2007 10 07 at 01:09 PM • permalink
In that NYT article was this passage:
The grays are larger and tougher and meaner than the reds. They can eat newly fallen acorns, and the reds cannot. They cross open lands that the reds are scared of. They are more sociable than reds, allowing for higher population densities. Although gray males cannot mate with red females, they often intimidate red males out of doing so. “It’s like: ‘That’s my girl. You move away!’ ”
Good God, it’s like the writer is just begging us to substitute “gray squirrels” with “Americans”, and “red quirrels” with “Englishmen”.Posted by David Crawford on 2007 10 07 at 01:34 PM • permalink
Overpaid, oversexed, and over here.Posted by Some0Seppo on 2007 10 07 at 02:11 PM • permalink
Overpaid, oversexed and over there.
When I lie back and think of England, Rupert Redesdale is hardly who I think of.
The grays are the biggest–and smartest–pests in my neighborhood. My husband employs Mr. BB to dissuade them from nesting in the trees directly above us. Seems to work.
I’d like to meet the person who decided, “Now, what shall I take with me to England? Ah, gray squirrels, just the thing!”Posted by Kyda Sylvester on 2007 10 07 at 02:28 PM • permalink
Honest to God, Seppo, I hadn’t read your comment when I posted. Great minds and all that.Posted by Kyda Sylvester on 2007 10 07 at 02:31 PM • permalink
I can’t read the source report. No way I’m letting icky NYT cootie (pronounced nit, like the little eggs that lice leave attached to hair roots) cookies on my computer.
So, question: Have they identified our landing beaches and/or airborne drop points? We have follow on waves of the Gray Squirrel Expeditionary Force on standby until we’re sure the insertion beaches and landing fields are secure.
Where I grew up, we had both red and grey squirrels and each kept pretty much to their own territory. The red ones are bigger and just about as aggressive as the greys. Guess British red squirrels are just wimpy.
We also have a couple of towns who harbor white squirrels, and I believe there are white-tailed squirrels around, which are basically mutant red squirrels.Posted by JorgXMcKie on 2007 10 07 at 06:36 PM • permalink
I thought in Britain it’s spelled “grey” not “gray” squirrel. But I could be wrong.
BTW, you don’t hunt squirrels with mere .22s, you hunt them with high pressure flame-throwers. Everyone knows that.Posted by Spectre765 on 2007 10 07 at 06:44 PM • permalink
Fools! This petty squabble between reds and greys is only weakening your country for the inevitable invasion of the dreaded Russian Black!
Squirrels have bitten to death a stray dog which was barking at them in a Russian park, local media report.
Passers-by were too late to stop the attack by the black squirrels in a village in the far east, which reportedly lasted about a minute.
Unite now, before it’s too late!Posted by Evil Pundit on 2007 10 07 at 07:09 PM • permalink
Dan clearly needs to get out more. Or is that less?
I have a happy snap of a squirrel at Grand Canyon right on the precipice. Will upload it and linky it tonight – quite enjoyed seeing them race around the edge of a 1000m drop.
One day soon we’ll be talking about how the nation’s identity has dissolved and distorted by migration. Future wars will be interesting battles between largely similar demographics.
hehe nice to see al gore’s film have to carry warnings of untruths – how inconvenient.
Awesome squirrel, filcan. I do believe I saw one recently when I was driving through North Carolina. Here in Florida all the squirrels are gray, though some of them have a slight reddish tint to their fur.Posted by Andrea Harris, Administrator on 2007 10 08 at 12:29 AM • permalink
While the silly humans are distracted by the pretend fight between the Reds and the Greys, the Ground Squirrel Underminer Teams continue their nefarious works.
Your foundations will fail, and with it your civilization.
(there’s a muahahaha and a hehehe that’s supposed to go in there, somewhere, but it doesn’t translate well. It keeps comming out as chittersqueek-squeek and head bobs.)
All red squirrels should be COMPOST! Media Watch? Here I am! Dean Martin! Hello?!Posted by dean martin on 2007 10 08 at 02:16 AM • permalink
If you really wanted the minions here to refrain from saying anything that could get them in trouble with Media Watch, you shouldn’t say refrain from saying anything that could get you in trouble with Media Watch. Now they’ll be coming out of the hills waiting for their turn at the microphone.
Besides, you should know how we are with the subject of squirrels.