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October 19, 2017

We have recently received several inquiries about the Low number of squirrel in the Louisa-Lawrence county area this year so we sent a message to the Ky. Fish and Wildlife Resources center in Frankfort.

 

Ky. F&W,

I have been getting calls to my website (thelevisalazer.com) asking about why there doesn’t seem to be many squirrel in our county this year. Is it related to the Blue Tongue disease in deer?

Also, I would like to have the name and contact info for the Conservation officer for Lawrence County.

Thanks in advance,

Mark

Eastern Grey Squirrel Eastern Grey Squirrel

The following message came back today explaining what the state F&W folks think may be the problem; 

 

Dr. Grayson,

We have also had some reports of locally low squirrel populations in E KY, and some of those were as early as last fall. It’s not unusual to go through highs and lows of small game species like squirrels. There is no known connection between EHD (blue-tongue) in deer and squirrel populations.

At this time, we don’t believe there is reason for great concern, but we will be monitoring the situation. Last fall was exceedingly dry (spurring all the wildfires), and this likely had a negative impact on squirrel survival (drought not the fire). The drought likely aborted hard mast production which is a critical component of a squirrel’s diet in the fall and winter.

For those that survived, their reproductive success was likely adversely affected. So, you can see a multi-year carryover from unfavorable weather conditions. Please don’t hesitate to send any additional questions my way. If you are receiving reports of observations of dead squirrels, then please send them my way as well.

Thanks for the inquiry!

John J. Morgan, Certified Wildlife Biologist
Small Game Program Coordinator
KY Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources
#1 Sportsman's Lane
Frankfort, KY 40601

 

(NOTE: BTW, there is no Conservation Officer stationed in Lawrence County at the present time.)

 

Comments  

0 #1 Lee 2017-10-19 20:23
I have trouble believing that!! There was a large population of squirrels last fall with plenty of food available for them along with water sources. I believe there's something more going on.
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