What we do

Our focus is on monitoring red squirrels on the Isle of Wight without using intrusive methods. Red squirrels are sensitive and can die of stress when caught or handled.

Most research data comes from you, the general public – this is called ‘citizen science’ and is extremely valuable to our research, although of course trail cameras, hairtubes and woodland surveyors walking a transect is the ideal way to go about it! Volunteers?
Read published papers...

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Red Squirrel Conservation Research Reports 1991-2020

These reports are copyrighted, so if any data  is used, Helen Butler  and the Wight Squirrel Project must be credited.

Wight Squirrel Project Manager, Helen Butler MBE, has published her report after 30 years researching red squirrels on the Isle of Wight – the first parts are available here as pdfs:

Part OnePart Two-Section OnePart Two-Section TwoPart Two-Section ThreePart Three Chapter OnePart 3 Chapter TwoPart Three Chapter Three

Helen has now finished her report on corridor links and the way red squirrels use them, which is available here as a pdf:

Corridors 30 years on from Corridors of Hope1991/2

Here is a pdf of our latest newsletter to bring you up to date.

Become a volunteer with the Wight Squirrel Project

Wight Squirrel Project has launched a volunteer recruitment drive which will lead to training workshops once the right people are signed on. The charity is wholly run by volunteers and would not exist without them. If you appreciate red squirrels and the work we do, please join us. Volunteer jobs available are:

• Welfare help with sick and injured squirrels

• Promoting Wight Squirrel Project

• Bi-annual woodland monitoring leadership

• Planning applications

• Running our Teemill online shop

For more details of these jobs, download the pdf, or contact Helen Butler: 01983 611003 wightsquirrels@hotmail.com

Citizen Scientists

Also from January 21st, a new opportunity for members of the general public to become citizen scientists will be available. If you walk regularly and would like to contribute to data collection, you can download a spreadsheet from the website, so all you have to do is fill it in and return the spreadsheet monthly, quarterly or annually depending on how successful your squirrel spotting is. This is volunteering at its easiest and most convenient to you.

It is essential to recruit reliable volunteers to keep red squirrel conservation going. Volunteer opportunities are wide ranging and training workshops are planned once we have the right recruits. We are so lucky having red squirrels on the Isle of Wight and must ensure we keep them.

If you are interested in becoming a citizen scientist, please contact Helen Butler: 01983 611003 wightsquirrels@hotmail.com.

You can help us with our important monitoring project

Isle of Wight home owners with gardens, and land owners with woodland areas are being invited to participate in a significant project to map the habitat of the Isle of Wight’s iconic red squirrel.

It's easy for you to help (and give yourselves something fun to do at this tricky time). We have two printable survey forms for you to download, as well as an identification guide:

• Guide to identifying Red Squirrels • Garden Survey • Squirrel Identity Profile


The IOW Red Squirrel Hide is open again!

The hide is now open to paid up Friends of the Red Squirrel, but due to Covid restrictions, only one person at a time can enter the hide. To avoid turning up when the hide is already occupied there is now a booking system in place.

Please contact Helen on wightsquirrels@hotmail.com for the link to the booking form.

How you can help us

The easiest and most efficient way to offer financial help is to become a Friend of the Red Squirrel and set up a standing order with a donation.

We also need volunteers to help us with walks, events and delivering newsletters. Please contact us if you can help.


Feeding Squirrels

Feeding red squirrels helps their survival and provides hours of entertainment for you.

They need a variety of food, not just peanuts. Hazelnuts, filberts, pine nuts, walnuts, sunflower seeds, coconut and fruit will provide a varied and healthier diet. NEVER feed brazil nuts or fatballs!


Squirrel Spotting

Peak activity times are dawn and dusk all year. Squirrels react to sound and movement, so stand still and keep quiet.

Where gardens back onto woods, squirrels are often fed and can be spotted as they travel to and from the garden.

Read more about best places to see red squirrels on the Island...

Support the charity and buy  a cute Wight Squirrel Project T-shirts online from
For each t-shirt bought, Wight Squirrel Project will get £4.50 towards funding

T-shirts cost £19.00
buy one here...