Save our hedgehogs! Surveys by citizen scientists show hedgehog numbers have fallen by about 50% since the turn of the century. Conservation groups say they are particularly concerned about the plight of the prickly creatures in rural areas.
What can you do to help?
- Look out for hedgehogs before you strim, mow or use hedgecutters. Many, many hedgehogs are injured or killed by people using power tools so please do check before you switch on.
- Let your garden, or a part of it, get a bit untidy – hedgehogs need wild areas, where grasses & native plants are left uncut, to nest in, to hibernate and for insects to eat.
- Make a hole in, or under, your garden fence, wall or gate –13x13cm is enough – to create a hedgehog highway.
- Keep your garden hazard free – hedgehogs can get trapped in netting & litter, drown in ponds, get burnt in bonfires.
- Go chemical free – garden pesticides kill our native plants and insects. They poison hedgehogs (and other wildlife) and mean there is less food & shelter for them too.
- Make a watering hole for hogs – hedgehogs die without water….and they also love to eat aquatic bugs and frogs.
- Feed a hungry hog – Hedgehogs will love tasty treats particularly in spring and autumn. If hedgehogs visit your garden, leave out a bowl of cat or dog food (not fish flavoured), chopped peanuts or meal worms.
- NEVER give bread or milk to hedgehogs.
Gardeners will be pleased to know that hedgehogs’ diet includes slugs!
For more details on actions to care for hedgehogs, please visit Cornwall Council’s Operation Hedgehog here