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Helping Hedgehogs

Hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus)

Although still relatively common, there is evidence that the species is in decline. Surveys in urban and rural areas both indicate falling numbers of hedgehogs. Nationally, the evidence indicates an average decrease of several per cent each year.

The hedgehog is Britain's only spiny mammal with approximately 6000 protective spines. It is a common garden visitor, breeding from early April to late September producing four to five young. Hedgehogs are nocturnal and will forage up to 2km from their nest.

What can you do to help

Become a Hedgehog Champion

Hedgehog Street are asking people to become Hedgehog Champions to rally support from their neighbours and work together to create ideal hedgehog habitat throughout their street, estate or communal grounds.

A range of information, advice and assistance is also available ranging from:

  • What to do with a sick hedgehog?
  • Advice on slug pellets
  • Linking your garden
  • Hedgehog food
  • Hedgehog homes
  • Pets and hedgehogs
  • Helpful garden features
  • Garden Hazards
  • Hibernation Survey

Gardening

  • Provide shelter by leaving piles of leaves, a woodpile or undisturbed compost heap
  • Supplement their diet by leaving water and cat or dog food (not fish flavoured). They are also partial to sunflower hearts, suet pellets, and (in moderation) raisins and banana
  • Avoid the use of pesticides
  • Ensure garden ponds have slipways or ramps for mammals to climb out if they accidentally fall in.
  • Check bonfires before lighting.
  • If using netting in the garden, do not construct cages or leave in a state after use that could become a hazard to hedgehogs.