Hedgehogs love gardens as they provide lots of insects for them to eat and residential streets with joining gardens are ideal as hedgehogs can move up to 2km in one night. That’s why hedgehogs need access to lots and lots of gardens.
One of the reasons for this decline in numbers is that gardens are not as accessible as they once were. Hedges are being replaced with fencing and hard landscaping is replacing lawns. If you have fences in your back garden, one thing you can do that is really simple and free is to make a small hole in the bottom of your fence to allow hedgehogs to move through. If enough houses do this, hedgehogs will have lots of gardens to roam around! A gap measuring 5 inches by 5 inches is enough to allow an adult hedgehog to squeeze through. If you have a gravel board at the base of your fence, why not put some stones/ bricks at the base of a small hole to allow hedgehogs to climb up.
We had a brilliant response to our competition to design a logo for our ‘Help the Hedgehogs of Nottingham’ campaign. Lots of schools took part and there were over 340 imaginative entries.
The winning design was created by Beth Ritchie from Haydn Primary, Sherwood. The judges loved this little hedgehog proudly wearing his Robin Hood hat. Beth won a hedgehog workshop for her whole class.
What can you do in your area?
As a neighbourhood, why not get together with your neighbours and make your street a ‘Hedgehog Street’. This initiative, led by the Peoples Trust for Endangered Species and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, is all about people, gardens and wildlife. Because hedgehogs need lots of connected gardens with plenty of insects that free from hazards, you can make a real difference. Hedgehog Street is about joining up the dots and empowering people with an understanding of hedgehogs, why they are declining and how easy it is to help them.
If you are interested in developing a Hedgehog Street in your neighbourhood, please get in touch
What else can you do for hedgehogs in your garden?
- If you have a pond make sure there is an escape route for hedgehogs, such as a log or large stone to allow them to walkout
- Check any woodpiles before removing them (or making a bonfire) to make sure there aren’t any hedgehogs in there
- Hedgehogs love meaty cat and dog food, so why not leave a dish of food out for them? Please only put out water for them to drink and not milk
- Take care when strimming areas of long grass, as these can be used by hedgehogs for day nests
- Leave ‘untidy’ areas as hedgehogs will like to forage in these as well as use them for nests
- Why not have a go at making a hedgehog home? Check out the hedgehog street for instructions
- Hedgehogs are natural pest control as love eating slugs!
- They have around 6,000 spines covering their backs to protect them from predators
- Baby hedgehogs are called hoglets and litters usually have 4-5 young
What are we doing?
- Attending events to promote hedgehog friendly gardening and handing out leaflets from the British Hedgehog Preservation Society
- Launching a new hedgehog webpage
- Adding stickers to strimmers used by grounds maintenance operatives and park rangers, to make them aware of hedgehogs who may be nesting in the long grass
- Running hedgehog footprint tunnel workshops for residents to monitor whether they have hedgehogs in their gardens
- Working with colleagues in the Planning Department to ensure new residential fencing is hedgehog friendly
- Supporting and promoting the Nottinghamshire Mammals Group in gathering hedgehog and other mammal records
For lots more information on Hedgehogs please visit:
If you have a hedgehog or other mammal in your garden, please report this to the Nottinghamshire Mammals Group using the website below: