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As the days get shorter and the nights get longer, we look into where red squirrels make there beds. Squirrels sleep in a nest called a Drey, these dreys are made of sticks, leaves, feathers, moss and any other soft materials they can find.

Made in trees at least 6m above the ground and nestled close to the tree trunk you can see bundles of twigs and leaves where squirrels make there home. During summer these homes are lighter, flatter and have less protection to bad weather, during autumn they either make them stronger and increase the protection against rain, wind and snow or abandon them to make a new one ready for the harsh winter weather.

To reduce the risk of being caught by predators or in case one gets damaged by water or infested by fleas they have more then one drey, which can be shared by multiple different squirrels and other animals. Birds and squirrels can use each other’s nest which makes it tricky to tell what animal made the nest!

Birds tend to make a nest closer to the top of the tree and further away from the trees trunk.  If you can see leaves woven into the nest or chewed pinecones on the ground nearby its probably a squirrels drey. The only definite way of telling which animal is using it is to wait nearby quietly at dawn/dusk and see which animal appears.


Why not try building your own drey?

 You will need

  • Sticks
  • Leaves
  • Bedding

(such as feathers, moss, grass or anything else you can find that’s soft)

Gather your sticks and leaves from the ground and see what you can find that will make great bedding.  Remember to only pick things up off the ground and don’t take them from trees.

Wind the sticks around each other to make a sturdy drey

Add the leaves and bedding to make it comfortable.

How do the sticks stay together?

Is this easy or hard?

Is this easier for a squirrel or you to make?

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