Hedgehog Awareness week runs from the 5th – 11th May 2019 to help raise awareness of these gorgeous creatures. We can all Help the hedgehogs so they continue to survive and thrive in our countryside and urban areas.
We know that nature and wildlife has been proven to have a profound effect on our health, well being as well as keeping our ecosystem healthy. Hedgehogs are such an important part of British wildlife but are sadly now in decline due to an increase in traffic, agriculture, the way we are now designing gardens with decking and paving and the reduction of plants, crucial undergrowth and the use of pesticides and poisons.
photo by Amy Lewis for the Hertfordshire & Middlesex Wildlife Trust
Top tips to help the hedgehogs
To help and introduce awareness to families we are sharing some top tips on how your could help the hedgehogs and encourage them into your garden. Let’s keep hedgehogs happy.
- Create a wild corner in your garden which will offer shelter, protection and food for hedgehogs and other wildlife.
- Avoid using pesticides and slug pellets in your garden. Not only do these harm the hedgehogs but also damage the food chain.
- Provide a shallow dish of fresh water and food such as meat based cat or dog food or chopped unsalted peanuts, especially during long dry spells.
- Make or buy a hedgehog home, it may be used as a hibernation site for the winter months or as a nesting box for a mummy hedgehog and her hoglets in the warmer months.
- Make sure hedgehogs have easy access in and out of your garden by having a 13cm x 13cm gap in your boundary wall or fence allowing hedgehogs to pass through.
- Check for hedgehogs before strimming or mowing.
- Dispose of litter. Every year hedgehogs get injured or trapped in rubbish.
- Check bonfires before they are lit as these are a perfect home for a hedgehog and other wildlife.
- Hedgehogs are good swimmers but can get trapped in ponds or pools with sheer sides. Keep water levels up and provide a gently sloping edge or place half submerged rocks in the water.
- Take care on roads, hedgehogs are nocturnal so are often seen at night. A hedgehogs natural defence is to roll up into a ball – this is no match for a motor vehicle!
With busy lives and technology taking over it is easy to forget the beauty of the outside world and appreciate the importance of nature is for us and for future generations to enjoy, protect and cherish.
Want to get more involved?
Learn basic hedgehog facts – where they live, what they eat, the problems facing hedgehogs and why they’re in decline. Receive practical advice about how to help hedgehogs in your garden. Find out about basic hedgehog care and handling. Meet a rescue hog (if one is available and happy to be handled that day) and see where they are being nursed back to health before being released.
Book one of the hedgehoggy events below (please note some are adults only)
Please note these are special organised events/visits and Hornbeam Wood Hedgehog Sanctuary is not open to the general public. Proceeds from this event will be split between the Wildlife Trust and Hornbeam Wood Hedgehog Sanctuary.