Calling all amateur photographers …. Will you join us in helping to protect the future of the red squirrel population in South West Scotland ?

The Solway Forests Red Squirrel Network, a group of volunteers dedicated to local red squirrel conservation, is delighted to announce the launch of an exciting new photography competition for the 2019 Solway Forests Red Squirrel Calendar. The calendar will form an integral part of a major fundraising initiative for red squirrel conservation in the Solway Forests and South West Scotland as a whole. They are under increasing threat from the continued incursion of grey squirrels into Dumfries & Galloway, and the resultant transmission of the squirrelpox virus.

We are now looking for atmospheric photographs of Scottish red squirrels to include in the calendar, and provide a rare insight into the enchanting and mysterious forest world of the red squirrel. The winning photograph will be featured on the front cover of the calendar ; and 11 runners up will be selected for one photograph to be included for each month of 2019. The entry cost is £1 per photograph ( maximum 3 per person ) with all monies raised going towards red squirrel conservation in our local area. Cheques should be made payable to Dalbeattie Community Initiative. Photographs can be colour or black and white , A5 size, and name/address details must be included on the back of each photograph. In addition, entries should include information on the location where the photograph was taken, and under what conditions, such as time of day and weather. If there is also an interesting story or anecdote to accompany the photograph this, too, should be included. The competition is open to amateur photographers of any age who have not previously won a national photography competition. The closing date for entries is September 1st, 2018. All photographs should be sent to Solway Forests Calendar Competition, Dalbeattie Community Initiative, 71, High Street, Dalbeattie,Kirkcudbrightshire, DG5 4HA.

The Solway Red Squirrel Group Network spokesperson, Mia Misso believes that : ” the new calendar will be at the forefront of our fundraising campaign in 2019. We are greatly looking forward to working with talented amateur photographers to produce a calendar worthy of one of Scotland’s favourite animals with both visitors and local people. ” Further details are available from solwayforestsrsn@gmail.com