How You Can Help Hedgehogs This Spring As They Come Out Of Hibernation
As the days get longer and the temperature rises, warmth will seep into the hidden nests of hedgehogs across the country, letting them know it’s time to come out of their long hibernation.
Fay Vass, chief executive of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, said: “Hedgehogs are struggling and it’s mostly due to human activity, these little actions can help a lot, a little effort from any of us could bring life back. much easier for hedgehogs. .”
The company, which is headquartered at Hedgehog House, Dhustone, Ludlow, suggests taking the following steps:
Offer meaty cat or dog food and water – they will be extremely hungry and thirsty after hibernation.
Create a pile of logs – this will provide natural shelter and food in the form of insects and larvae, Bed & Breakfast!
Check before you prune – a quick check in tall grass or under hedges is essential to avoid killing or causing horrible injury to hedgehogs.
Provide a hedgehog house – this could be used as a nursery in the summer! Plans for building a house can be found on the charity’s website britishhedgehogs.org.uk
Join your gardens! Talk to your neighbors about adding a hedgehog highway in fences and walls; they only need 13 cm x 13 cm square and will connect the vital habitat of the “pigs!”
Other tips include ditching pesticides, keeping nets off the ground, leaving a wild corner in the garden, and ensuring there is an escape route from ponds.
Fay said: “Hedgehogs are good swimmers but have trouble getting out of steep, slippery ponds and pools, so make sure they have an escape route.”
The 2022 State of Britain’s Hedgehogs report published last month by BHPS and People’s Trust for Endangered Species, explained that hedgehog numbers have declined by 30-75% in rural areas since the turn of the century and continue to fall .
Their urban cousins are doing slightly better, with their numbers stabilizing or perhaps even starting to increase. Fay continues: “We believe this slight uptick is due to people taking steps, like those in our plan, to help hedgehogs. That said, the picture is still far from rosy; in decline for many years, they are starting from a very low base.
For more advice on helping hedgehogs, involvement and the hedgehog house plan, see britishhedgehogs.org.uk or call the charity on 01584 890 801.