09 April 2010

A prince of a guy

Can it be that the Prince of Wales is really the Prince of Squirrels?

It's no secret that Prince Charles is an open advocate of the imperiled native red squirrel, and he has referred to the tiny rodent as "this precious little animal," an argument it would be hard to challenge him on.

It is also no secret that he is a major player in the UK's Red Squirrel Survival Trust, which seeks to protect the nation's reds.

But the Prince obviously considers newspaper inquiries about his advocacy to be, well, something of a royal pain. A recent request by the Times newspaper in London, wanting to know more about Charles' lobbying on behalf of an ecologically (and squirrel-logically) friendly property developer was rebuffed by authorities, which called such information "a state secret."

Secret Squirrel, anyone?

Though love of squirrels should never be classified information, when love and politics mix, the rules apparently change - at least in government's eyes.

Freedom of the press is, of course, as precious as the freedom of squirrels to dance in the trees, so let's hope members of the press and members of government can sort this one out.

In the meantime, it is good to know that the Prince holds the native red squirrels dear, and that in the kingdom of his heart, they are truly the reigning species. If only they could learn to share with the greys, what a peaceable kingdom it might be.


Lone Grey Squirrel said...

Please be aware that while Princey Charlie supports the red squirrels, he advocates culling and extermination of greys in U.K., blaming the greys for reducing the red population.

squirrelmama said...

Not a good thing, LGS, thanks for pointing that out. I clearly have more homework to do and perhaps this calls for a follow-up post. This is distressing.

merinz said...

I saw a baby red squirrel when I visited the UK last, about four years ago. It was in an animal shelter on the island of Jersey. They are beautiful little animals.