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Deadly blow. Residents of Sestroretsk are concerned with mass deaths of squirrels


Ecological problem in Sestroretsk. Locals are concerned with mass deaths of squirrels. Dead rodents are being found more frequently


People have already turned to ecologists to find reasons for these incidents. Nikolay Rastvortsev reports

Evgeniya Shumkova, resident of Sestroretsk: “I don’t see how these squirrels fall, but given that their bodies are still warm this means that happened recently”

Evgeniya Shumkova takes this path daily walking her dog. Couple of days ago, her mutt Alisa started to whine alarmingly. When the woman came closer, she saw a dead squirrel. Recently, there have been 5 of these unpleasant findings. The pensioner buried two rodents, the others she left as “evidence”

Evgeniya Shumkova, resident of Sestroretsk: “Here’s a big squirrel – beauty. Alisa, step aside. The second one is the same, one has her nose covered in blood – probably hit it during the fall. And this is a cub – very small one”

The resident of Sestroretsk conducted an entire investigation. Evgeniya Georgievna found out that it was by this lamp post that her friends also had found dead squirrels. The woman tried to draw attention to the issue, but she wasn’t heard.

Evgeniya Shumkova, resident of Sestroretsk: “I called the phone. Both to transport prosecutor’s office and to railroad management. They replied in a rude way – as if we had no other problems than dealing with your squirrels. They told me at “Sestroretskiy Kurort” that this territory wasn’t theirs. But its your squirrels, its our wealth”

Only ecologists responded to the plea for help. According to experts, the animals were not poisoned. There were no traces of hunters’ gunshots found too. The reason for these mass deaths is electricity. The tops of the trees are situated too close to power lines.

Egor Leontyev, head of environment protection project of “Zelenyi Front” ecological organization: “The distance between the trees and the power lines is short – around half-a-meter, maybe even less. In case of a windy or rainy weather, electricity can hit the tree and kill a squirrel sitting on it”

Ecologists have filed a claim to the transport prosecutor’s office. They hope the authorities will hasten up the process of finding someone responsible for clearing territory by the railway, because squirrels are defenseless against electricity

Nikolay Rastovrtsev, reporter: “Probably the only way to stop the squirrel deaths, is to cut the branches of trees so that they won’t reach the cables and distance to the lamp post would be bigger”