It is a sad fact that in many areas, where well meaning people have planted deciduous trees, there has been much damage created by the squirrel and deer populations. Probably not as much havoc as has been wreaked by our own human population.
Becoming aware of how hard it is for native trees to repopulate themselves (largely due to land pressures) but often then because of incessant nibbling of young trees or bark stripping is important. There are many methods used by land managers to reduce populations but often as not, they will all still come in from other neighbouring lands and anyway the forest is their natural home.
There are stories that in the old days, the Spirit of the Forest worked with these animals so that the squirrels were assisting sowing acorns for new oak trees and that the loss of the large forests has meant that they are out of their natural balance and this large forest-wide consciousness is no longer able to support its inhabitants this way. That’s where human forest awareness might need to step in. It’s really hard to accept this problem except for when you see how prevalent it is.
That is why there are people working to fund the development of a grey squirrel vaccine that renders them impotent to creating a new generation. The jury is out on this one, but the more the general public is informed about the situation, the more they can join the debate about what is the best course of action.
Maybe, before we do anything too drastic, we can learn from the fabulous foraging and providential ways of the squirrels and the silent, witnessing at oneness with the woods of the deer.