Hedgehogs are fast disappearing from our towns and countryside and every year many are seriously injured or killed by cutting machines in both commercial development settings and residential garden areas.
A hedgehog’s natural defence is to roll into a ball but unfortunately their spines are no match for cutting machinery.
Hedgehog Awareness Week runs from May 3 to 9 and is organised by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS), which this year is asking people to take the time to think about how they could help hedgehogs, by asking both commercial developers and homeowners to check grass and hedges, thoroughly before using mowers, strimmers, or hedge cutters.
This year the charity has created a list of the many simple things you can do to help hedgehogs in the wild;
- Create a log pile that will offer shelter and food
- Build a Hedgehog Home (see plans at https://www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk/hedgehog-homes/)
- Move piles of rubbish to a new site before burning it.
- Check areas carefully before mowing or strimming.
- Ensure netting is kept at a safe height.
- Check compost heaps before digging the fork in.
- Stop or reduce the amount of pesticides and poisons used.
- Cover drains or deep holes.
- Ensure there is an easy route out of ponds & pools.
RammSanderson is keen to support Hedgehog awareness week and commenting, Director, Nick Sanderson said “In an increasingly urbanised Britain it is important to spread the message of how we can look after this lovely creature. By talking to neighbours or our property partners we can ensure hedgehogs have access points and hedgehog friendly features in the garden and rural areas, which will help to open up a huge amount of habitat for them.”
Adding he said “One of the big issues is barriers to their movement caused by garden fences. The best thing is to encourage ‘hedgehog highways’ by leaving 15cm x 15cm gaps at the base of fences to allow for dispersal in and out of gardens. You can even buy hedgehog highway signs for your fence.”
In the 1950s it was estimated there were 36.5 million hedgehogs in Britain, however a more recent estimate in 1995, suggested there were only 1.5 million remaining. Evidence since has shown that numbers have been declining at an increasing speed.
If you would like more information about Hedgehog awareness week you can visit the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS) website by clicking here.