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Charity looks for Hedgehog Champions

By Chris Saunderson

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THERE are many things you can do to help hedgehogs.

Hedgehogs need a helping hand.
Hedgehogs need a helping hand.

Hedgehog Awareness Week runs from May 2-8 and aims to raise the profile of Britain’s only spiny mammal.

This year the charity is asking people create their very own hedgehog haven.

Gardens are a stronghold for hedgehogs, and people can make their lives so much easier with very little effort.

Tips will be given out on the charity’s social media accounts during the week using #hedgehogweek with daily competitions to win hedgehoggy prizes.

Here are some tips:

  • Make sure hedgehogs can access your garden with a ‘Hedgehog Highway’ a 5” x 5” (13 x 13cm) square gap in the bottom of fences or walls should do it! Once created you can log these on the Big Hedgehog Map at www.bighedgehogmap.org
  • Create a log pile that will offer shelter and natural food.
  • Build a Hedgehog Home (see plans at www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk/hedgehog-homes).
  • Move piles of rubbish to a new site on the day you are burning it and check it carefully before setting light to it, lighting from only one side so that there’s an escape route should you have missed anything.
  • Check areas carefully before mowing or strimming.
  • Ensure netting is kept at a height that allows hedgehogs to pass safely under it.
  • Check compost heaps carefully before digging the fork in.
  • Stop using pesticides and poisons.
  • Cover drains or deep holes.
  • Ensure there is an easy route out of ponds & pools.

BHPS Chief Executive, Fay Vass, said: "Our gardens take up such a lot of habitat, and by each making our own plot more hedgehog friendly, we can improve a huge amount of habitat for them.

"If you don’t have a garden yourself, you can still help by contacting public space managers, neighbours, family and friends to ensure they are all doing their bit.

"We urge everyone to become a Hedgehog Champion for their area at Hedgehog Street – a project run by BHPS and our partners People’s Trust for Endangered Species."

You can Join more than 93,000 champions by signing up for free at: www.hedgehogstreet.org – you will get an email with top tips on how you can help hedgehogs each month and there’s even a Hedgehog Street app you can download from The App Store or Google Play.

BHPS is hoping to raise £2000 during Hedgehog Awareness Week 2021, you can donate to the 2021 #hedgehogweek appeal at: https://www.justgiving.com/campaign/HAW21

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