Albino squirrels are back!

Photograph: Jacqueline Fletcher

On several occasions in the past ten or fifteen years albino squirrels have been seen in the village. This one was photographed recently by Jacqueline Fletcher at Kiln Farm.

Here is another picture taken at the same time:

Photograph: Jacqueline Fletcher

One was also discovered by Molly Wootton in the garden of Mulberries in 2005:

Photograph: Colin Wootton

Photograph: Colin Wootton

….and there was an earlier sighting twelve or fifteen years ago by Fiona Miller:

Photograph: Fiona Miller

George Metcalfe writes:

The grey (or American) squirrel (sciurus carolinensis) is a common visitor to our gardens nowadays, and not always a welcome one. Introduced into this country in the nineteenth century, it has spread to most parts and has driven out our native red squirrel which survives only in a few places such as northern Scotland, the Lake District, small pockets in Wales, East Anglia and Brownsea Island in Poole Harbour. All right, it’s perhaps quite an endearing little creature, and its agility can be impressive, but at the same time it can be very destructive – ask any forester!

Occasionally, however, one of the species provokes a different reaction. It now appears that we have in our midst an albino version – pure white, with pink eyes. This is a very rare occurrence, but it’s not unique in Sulgrave. Perhaps twelve or fifteen years ago, there were two albinos in the village. Both died in the course of time, naturally, but the gene or strain, or whatever it is, can be carried on until it reappears, sometimes after several generations. So that’s what has happened. Keep your eyes open – a white squirrel shouldn’t be too difficult to spot!


Leave a Reply