Reduced squirrel numbers due to harsh winter result in improved cobnut harvest

The long, cold winter has sharply reduced the number of squirrels that cobnut growers have had to contend with this season, leading to an above-average crop, according to Kentish Cobnuts Association membership secretary Martin Adam.

"I'd say squirrel numbers are down to 10-20 per cent on normal this year," he said. "But they are a resilient species and they'll be back. More people are planting cobnuts, but not on a large scale. There is only around 280ha in total, but it's steadily increasing."

While recent German breeding has introduced the Gunslebert variety, "the 100-year-old Kentish Cob variety is the most reliable", Adam added.

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