Pine marten may control red squirrel displacement and also could help suppress invasion of the grey ones, according to the new research disclosed in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B that thoroughly explored the forensic findings based on the link between these three species.
A team of researchers from the University of Aberdeen carried out the study suggesting that the native pine marten, that once were on the decline are suppressing the invasion of the gray squirrels, especially in Scotland that ultimately helps recovery of displacement of the red squirrel populations.
The research has been conducted by many international scientists including Emma Sheehy and Xavier Lambin from the University of Aberdeen in Scotland, Christopher Sutherland from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and others from the Waterford Institute of Technology in Ireland.
Species ecologist, Kenny Kortland from the Forest Enterprise Scotland said in a statement that, “The findings of this research are extremely encouraging. It seems we have a very welcome ally in our efforts to protect red squirrel populations on the national forest estate. The research demonstrates that the return of native predators can have beneficial impacts for other native species.”
Dr Emma Sheehy, the leading researcher from the University of Aberdeen stated that, “Where pine marten activity is high, grey squirrel populations are actually heavily suppressed. And that gives the competitive advantage to red squirrels. So you see lots of red squirrels and you see them coming back into areas where they hadn’t been for quite some time.”