Just when you thought it was safe to enjoy wildlife in London’s Royal Parks…

The animals that reside in London’s Royal Parks, including the humble squirrel, are loved by so many people, especially children.

People often visit the parks to interact with London’s urban wildlife; both Londoners and tourists watch squirrels’ entertaining antics with interest, photograph them, and feed them. Indeed, the squirrels can be so tame, that it is a common sight to see one climb up someone’s leg to share a sandwich! A quick look through YouTube shows many video clips of people interacting with squirrels and the sheer joy and happiness that it brings.  Animal therapy is also highly beneficial for people suffering from depression and other mental disorders.

But, there is also a hidden, dark side: did you know that the Park Rangers put up traps to kill these innocent squirrels? This includes culling pregnant squirrels or lactating mothers, whose crying babies will slowly starve to death. The traps are sometimes visible at just 7-10 feet in the trees, causing distress to children and adults alike. This practice is barbaric, cruel, and evil.

As a Greek Cypriot living in Enfield, I am fighting to save our furry little friends from being culled in London’s Royal Parks, including Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, and St James’s Park.

Together with a group of like-minded individuals, I have organised two protests with a third being scheduled. Figures revealed by the Royal Parks in response to a Freedom of Information Request by animal protection organisation, Animal Aid, reveals that over 1,000 squirrels were culled in 2016. And it is not just squirrels that the Royal Parks cull: deer, rabbits, and foxes are also on the death list.

I became intrigued by grey squirrels in 2018 having watched a lady feed them in Bournemouth, and then set myself a challenge with the local squirrels in Enfield. Squirrels have wonderful personalities, can be friendly and make me laugh; some of them regularly feed from my hand. When people see me feeding squirrels, they are often pleasantly surprised as they’ve never seen such an interaction before. I’ve changed many peoples’ conceptions of squirrels. I have never been bitten as I’ve built up a sense of trust with them and they know me.

If you have a heart and love wildlife, please email the following personnel at the Royal Parks to protest about the culling of squirrels:

Andrew Scattergood (Chief Executive) [email protected]

David McLaren (Policy) [email protected]

General Enquiries [email protected]

 

By Polycarpia Victoros

3 Responses to Wildlife murder in London’s Royal Parks

  1. Lucia Maria says:

    The persecution and systematic killing of the grey squirrels in the U.K. is nothing short of an atrocity! Here in the U.S., many of us are appalled to learn of the preference there for one squirrel over the other under the guise of ridding the country of an evasive species. Of course, the fact that the red squirrels are also non-native is omitted as the U.K. forges ahead with their slaughter of the greys. If anyone bothers to research, they will find that the reds were out of favor at one time in U.K. history, but now it appears it is the poor greys’ turn to be out of favor. Unfortunately, being out of favor means that their slaughter is sanctioned by the government and no compassion can be shown to these innocent little creatures who are just unlucky enough to be born in the U.K.! It is sad to see a country exhibit such a lack of kindness and even sadder to hear the twisted excuses that are used to try and justify their lack of kindness and subsequent slaughter of grey squirrels. The U.K. will prove to be on the wrong side of history when it comes to this issue. The abysmal treatment of the grey squirrels in the U.K. is being witnessed by the world and animal loving people everywhere are horrified!

  2. Bernadette Collins says:

    Absolutely disgusting. It’s cruel and unnecessary

  3. Paul Allum says:

    This action against grey squirrels is barbaric and inhuman and certainly needs looking at

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