NE Scotland, Orkney & Shetland

Rare white squirrel photographed in Royal Deeside

White red squirrel Image copyright NESBIP
Image caption The squirrel was spotted by conservationists in Royal Deeside

A rare white squirrel has been photographed in Royal Deeside.

Experts said it was believed to be a red rather than a grey squirrel as it had the hairy ear tufts absent in greys.

The squirrel was snapped by conservationists working to protect red squirrel populations in the north east of Scotland.

They said they would now work to determine whether or not the animal was a "true albino" with red eyes.

Image copyright NESBIP

Conservationist Dr Gwen Maggs said: "We will set up some remote cameras to try and get some better pictures with a clear view of its eyes.

"In any event, this is a rare and exciting discovery."

Alex Stuart, co-ordinator of the North East Scotland Biodiversity Partnership added: "Partly white animals, like sparrows, crows, blackbirds and even hedgehogs do appear from time to time, but these are not true albinos.

"Sightings like this really demonstrate the value of keeping your eyes and ears open - there's lots of other amazing wildlife to be seen and heard out there as well as white, red squirrels."

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