Endangered squirrel to become resident as part of £30,000 upgrade at Lancaster's Williamson Park

A Prevost's Squirrel will be introduced at the mini-zoo in Lancaster's Williamson Park as it prepares to re-open to the public.

Tuesday, 29th September 2020, 7:00 am

Councillors have been asked to approve the continuation of a £30,000 investment which will be used to develop the small mammal area at the zoo - including a new exhibit housing animals within the squirrel family.

Specifically this will include the endangered Prevost's squirrel, which forms part of a European breeding program.

Other recent introductions at the mini-zoo have included a pair of marmosets called Colin and Leo (video here), and nine male meerkats.

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The Butterfly House and Ashton Memorial in Lancaster's Williamson Park.

Lancaster City Council officers say the introduction of the Prevost's squirrel, or Asian tri-colored squirrel, would continue to increase the reputation of the collection within the zoo world, BIAZA (British and Irish Association of Zoos and Aquaria), EAZA (European Association of Zoos and Aquaria) and ZSL (Zoological Society of London).

The funds would also be used to develop a disused habitat trail area by building a raised wildlife pond that will contribute to educational sessions and assist in income generation for the park.

It is estimated the new attraction will generate additional net income of £10,000 per year.

Government rulings prevent the zoo facility from opening currently due to its indoor nature, but the team hope to be ready for when sanctions lift.

A Prevost's Squirrel. Getty Images.
Some of the meerkats which came to the park in 2016.