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Last Updated: Wednesday, 16 August 2006, 14:59 GMT 15:59 UK
Town going nuts for squirrel TV
Red squirrel
Visitors to Creetown can get a close-up view of squirrels
Creetown visitors have got the chance to watch live pictures of red squirrels and nesting peregrine falcons.

Isabel Glasgow, of Scottish Natural Heritage, has officially opened a new facility at Creetown Heritage Museum.

Nearby CCTV cameras beam live and recorded footage to a special viewing area where the wildlife action can be watched on a set of four screens.

The local community hopes it will help to bring more visitors to the area and safeguard the future of the museum.

"This is a brilliant way to get close to wildlife in a way that you never normally can - and it's compulsive viewing," said Ms Glasgow.

"The Creetown wildlife cameras fit extremely well into what is becoming a Dumfries and Galloway wildlife trail.

"So I hope in the longer term not only the village but also other businesses in the area reap the benefits."

'Increasing interest'

Andrew Macdonald, of the museum, said visitor numbers were already on the increase.

"We realised right at the beginning that our ideas fitted in with an increasing interest in wildlife amongst both residents and visitors in this part of Galloway," he said.

Despite a few teething troubles he said everybody in the area had given a helping hand.

"It was truly a community effort as more and more local people became involved along the way, all giving their help willingly and freely," he said.

The community hopes to build links with other wildlife viewing projects in the region in future.

The scheme was funded by the Slevin Bequest, Forward Scotland, Tarmac and SNH.

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