Radiant redheads are only found in certain areas of Northern Ireland, which is why we are working to protect them - and encouraging you to help too.

With its distinctive russet fur, tufted ears and twitching tail, a red squirrel is a captivating sight. Autumn is a great time to see them as they forage nuts to cache for the winter months. Listen out for the chattering call, and look out for the gnawed husks of cones.

Once common, red squirrels have declined rapidly since the 1950s. Numbers in the UK have fallen from around 3.5 million, to a current estimated population of around 120,000. This is reflected across Ireland where the red squirrel population is now estimated to be less than 40,000.

Red squirrels continue to be in serious decline due to disease, the loss and fragmentation of woodland habitat and competition from the more robust grey squirrel. There are now only a handful of refuges left for red squirrels in Northern Ireland.

But there is hope for our much-loved, endangered red squirrel. A new four-year project to protect and promote red squirrels in Northern Ireland and the border counties is now underway by Ulster Wildlife. Funded by EU Life14 and the National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Red Squirrels United Project will help prevent further spread of grey squirrels into areas that are currently home only to reds through conservation and community engagement activities.

Find out more about red squirrels, places to see them, how we're helping and how you can get involved by using the links provided. 

Be sure to submit your sightings of red or grey squirrels so we can help track the fortunes of red squirrels.

You can follow our Red Squirrel Team on Twitter or contact us via email redsquirrels@ulsterwildlife.org