AN orphaned baby red squirrel has been saved after being found lying on a woodland path near Inverness.
The four to five week old kit is recovering in the care of the Scottish SPCA where staff have named her Dizzee.
A member of the public spotted the tiny orphan lying on the forest floor while walking in Daviot Woods in September.
The woman picked the female squirrel up and took her to the charity’s Highlands and Islands Animal Rescue and Rehoming Centre at Inshes,Inverness, where staff immediately had her checked over by a vet.
They also began syringe feeding her with lectaid, a type of milk formula for young and weak animals.
Once she was strong enough to be moved, the squirrel was transferred on to the Scottish SPCA’s National Wildlife Rescue Centre at Fishcross, near Alloa, where she is currently making excellent progress.
Centre assistant manager Colin Liddell said,
“Dizzee was only 90grams when she arrived in our care but she’s come on leaps and bounds over the past three weeks and has now almost doubled in size and is weighing in at a very healthy 165g.
“Wildlife assistant Sheelagh McAllister has been providing Dizzee with round the clock care which includes taking her home at night to continue her hand feeding.
“Dizzee’s now starting to eat solid foods including shelled nuts and she’s ready to be moved into an outdoor enclosure.
“This is when we take a completely hands-off approach to allow Dizzee to establish her natural fear of humans. She’ll have lots of space to run and jump and develop her fitness in preparation for release back into the wild in around two weeks’ time.”
We were alerted to the plight of the seven week old female otter cub when a couple found her lying on the ground motionless in a forestry commission car park at Taynuilt, Argyll and Bute, on New Year’s Day.
Claire Shorthose, an auxiliary inspector for the Scottish SPCA and a practising vet, responded to the call and immediately administered warmed fluids and glucose.
Inspector Shorthose said,
“The couple who found the otter cub took her home and kept her warm until I arrived.
“She was barely alive and in a hypothermic and hypoglycaemic state. I had to stop the van to revive her during the journey but thankfully she pulled through.
“I cared for her until she was stable enough to be transported to our National Wildlife Rescue Centre near Alloa where she is continuing her recovery.”