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Hedgehogs: How you can help

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Jeremy Torrance web producer Jeremy Torrance web producer | 15:23 UK time, Thursday, 2 June 2011

We've lost a quarter of the hedgehogs in the UK over the last decade. Habitat loss is thought to be a major contributing factor to this crisis. But there's a rather clever new way for you to help hedgehogs and we've discovered an exciting hands-on activity you can do to find out if you've got prickly visitors in your garden.

Hedgehog by Steve Heliczer

A welcome garden visitor © Steve Heliczer

Hedgehog Street is a new collaboration between the British Hedgehog Preservation Society and The Mammal Society, funded by the BBC Wildlife Fund and PTES.

The project aims to link up hedgehog-friendly habitats in urban environments to help them find food and shelter. It involves the collaboration of communities along the same road to help link up their gardens.

If you want to become a hedgehog champion for your street go to the Hedgehog Street website and order your pack to get started making your road a hedgehog-friendly place.

Hedgehog on a log by Steven Oliver

Hog on a log © Steven Oliver

Once you've joined Hedgehog Street or even if you just want to find out whether you've got hedgehogs visiting your garden there's a clever way that The Mammal Society has developed with Nottingham Trent University.

Hedgehog footprints

Hedgehog prints from a tracking tunnel by Cuxton in Kent © The Mammal Society

By using simple materials you can encourage your visitors through a safe tunnel where they will leave behind tell-tale prints of their visit. Simply assemble the materials you need and follow the downloadable instructions (28KB). The Mammal Society's simple guide to mammal prints will help you identify your visitors.

Let us know how you get on by commenting below or share your footprints and hog photos on the BBC Springwatch Photo group.

Comments

  • Comment number 1.

    how many chicks is it likely for a great tit to have because we have a box of them in the garden?

  • Comment number 2.

    The eggs on the water could be dragon fly or demoselle

  • Comment number 3.

    I think they are either damselfly eggs or dragonfly eggs

  • Comment number 4.

    I think they're mosquioto eggs

  • Comment number 5.

    When do hedgehogs have babies? We live in Urmston and see quite a lot of them and we would like to try and improve our garden what can we do to improve their environment. We feed them cat food and they seem to like it but is there anything else that is better for their diet.

  • Comment number 6.

    Mosquito eggs

  • Comment number 7.

    We have just found a poorly hedgehog in our garden this evening. We put some dog food out for it, but it wasn't interested.

    We have just got back from taking it to a lady from the Hedgehog Preservation Society, so that hopefully it can be nursed back tro health

  • Comment number 8.

    Hedgehogs - I was told that hedgehogs are a favoutie type of food for badgers - is this true!

  • Comment number 9.

    While I think its a great idea to make holes between gardens for hedgehogs and I would truly love to do so, many people (including us) have a small dog and therefore are unable to do so. Please dont forget to remind people NOT to cut holes in fences without speaking to their neighbour because if a dog should escape it will cause problems.

  • Comment number 10.

    I have a hedgehog, he visits every night and sits in the dish I leave out for the birds with bird seed, nuts, fat ball and mealy worms - he loves them is this normal food for a hedgehog to eat?

  • Comment number 11.

    We have two hedgehogs regularly in our garden - on Monday night one of them caught a frog and started eating it in front of us. It mainly ate the legs as the body was left for us the next day. The hedgehog seemed to play with it before biting its head and rolling it's spines over the frog. Fascinating to watch.

  • Comment number 12.

    I live in the countryside and my garden has many wild areas which are ideal hedgehog sites. I have not seen a hedgehog for 18 years but we have a large and healthy badger community. I am sure hedgehogs are predated by badgers and no matter what I do to improve the habitat, hedgehogs will not return while we have so many badgers,
    Ian

  • Comment number 13.

    we saw a hedgehog in Great Massingham in Norfolk it was walking around the garden i went on the grass

  • Comment number 14.

    Hedgehogs - I was told that hedgehogs are a favourite type of food for badgers - is this true?

  • Comment number 15.

    With regards digging a hole under the garden fence for hedgehogs. I would love to do this but currently my boundaries are fortified against RATS! my neighbour has chickens which I think attracts them. Is there a solution? By the way I have Jack Russells who patrol the fence. Jeff

  • Comment number 16.

    I have been feeding hedgehogs with puppy food, and always ensure that there is water. Last year I had a least 6 hedgehogs in the garden at the same time. This year I have only seen three at the same time. I presume it was one female and two males judging by the behaviour. The one (female) was calmly drinking from the water bowl while the other two looked as if they were trying to ram each other. Our garden has relatively few slugs compared with the past.

  • Comment number 17.

    hi
    we have a family of hedghogs witch visit us most nights 9drives our cat mad0

  • Comment number 18.

    We have had a hedghog in our garden two nights running. so they are around in Shrewsbury Ruth

  • Comment number 19.

    Hedgehogs: Re your article on cutting holes in fences to allow hedgehogs to roam across gardens. If I cut a 15 inch hole in my fence it will allow next door's cat easy access to my garden. Does it have to be 15 inches, surely 6 inches would be big enough.

  • Comment number 20.

    Cat flap for hedgehogs in the fence without the door

  • Comment number 21.

    Chris. I haven't done any gardening for years, I am cultivating a natural environment!!! Hedgehogs visit every evening from spring through to late autumn.
    At the height of summer last year I had six in the garden all at the same time (2 were babies) It costs me a fortune in mealworms but I am very proud of my messy garden.
    (love the programmes). Wendy, Sheffield

  • Comment number 22.

    We saw a hedgehog in our garden about 6 weeks ago. However, at this time of the year I see quite a few of them squashed on the roads as drive into work :(

  • Comment number 23.

    Hi all, we are lucky to have a hedgehog/s living under our shed. We have had to fence the area off as our springer has taken a fancy to it! Poor thing is often carried into her bed! I have put out a dish of water and putting out cat food every night as we haven't had much rain to bring out slugs etc not sure if there is any young, will keep you posted

  • Comment number 24.

    I think (and hope) that Nuneaton must be bucking the trend for hedgehog decline. When I take our dog out for her nightly walk we often come across them trotting across people's lawns or in the park. I have to admit that the dog is quicker at spotting them than me!

  • Comment number 25.

    ithink this idea of making gardens linked by a small hole is great . i have always had a hole in my fence to let the hogs through. harry and mates come most nights to finish off the cat food . they also have a drink from the saucer under the plants . i love to see and watch them . my fence has had a hole in it for nearly 30 years now , so i do believe this can and does work .

  • Comment number 26.

    hi all , i live in shropshire by the stipper stones, i feed 4 lovley big hedghogs in my garden, i have gaps under my fence,so thay come and go at will, but my neighbour puts down slug pellets, will thay eat them ?

  • Comment number 27.

    We have had a hedgehog in our garden for a few years now, and have tried very hard to make our garden as hedgehog friend as we can and regularly leave out cat food for it we were not sure if it was just visiting or lived in our garden until day! unfortunately my husband found a dead baby hedgehog approx 2.5 inch which had bite marks to its head, then on further examination of the area and lifting a flag stone we found the nest with mother asleep and another dead baby a smaller one that was half eaten near the exist to the nest. Does anyone have any ideas on what predator could have done this or if maybe the mother had done this herself???? As you can imagine we are devastated.

  • Comment number 28.

    My parents live in South Lincolnshire and every night between 9.00 & 9.30 3 to 5 hedgehogs come into the garden from an adjacent field. Might be something to do with dad always breaking up half a dozen biscuits and leaving a bowl of water out.

  • Comment number 29.

    Not happy with the idea of making hedgehog runs bewteen garden, I have hedgehogs in my garden but I do not use slug pellets etc, but how can anyone be sure that the neighbours who may agree with the hedgehog runs are not using pesticides that will poison what then hedgehogs eat, a basic good idea but with a few flaws !!!

  • Comment number 30.

    Some years ago we had a hedgehog in the garden who used to rustle the dead leaves at night looking for grubs so we called him Russell, and one night I heard a strange noise and discovered he had found a mate who naturally became Jane.

    Some while later we saw an advert in the local paper from Birmingham Hedgehog Rescue wanting foster homes for hedgehog families whose offspring were born too late to be mature enough to survive the winter and took on a mum and 2 babies to feed up. We had to weigh them regularly and eventually released them when they were up to weight.

  • Comment number 31.

    I haven't seen a hedghog for the 25 years I've lived in my current house (except a squashed one on the road during the first yera or so), and I'd like to encourage them. But there are badgers in the area, and one comes most nights to my garden for peanuts. I remember on a previous Springwatch hearing that badgers eat hedgehogs, so is that why there are no hedgehogs?

  • Comment number 32.

    we've got hedge hogs in and around the garden last nite one came running up the side the house, then heard it in next door neighbours garden grunting.I've seen and heard at least four of them.There great!

  • Comment number 33.

    Has the honey bee population dropped dramatically this year, or is it just me?
    I've got a large Skimmia bush which is normally alive with bees when it's in flower in spring, but this year I didn't see a single bee on it. There are now lots of bumble bees around, but I've hardly seen any smaller bees.
    I live on the western edge of Sheffield, in a suburb with lots of quite big gardens.

  • Comment number 34.

    One of the best things you can do to help hedgehogs is to feed them a good food. There are specially made hedgehog foods available from pet shops that are a shape that babies can also eat. Some cat and dog food isn't very good for them.

  • Comment number 35.

    Re Hedgehog Street. A 4inch gap should be more than adequate I think. A 15inch gap would encourage badgers which eat hedgehogs (and garden produce).

  • Comment number 36.

    For the last few weeks we have had 2 hedghogs regularly visiting our garden at night and gorging on plates of catfood,they spend a lot of time on our patio sniffing around before leaving the garden under our side gate.Last week a badger came under the gate 4 nights running and delved under the same shrub for something, not sure if it could be mice which we have had in our garden at various times or frogs which we have most of the time.However it didnt come at the same time as the hedghogs!

  • Comment number 37.

    I have a hedgehog in my garden and last year she had 2 babies in a nest under some corrugated iron. They were really sweet, about 4 inches long and prickly!! I haven't seen them yet this year so I hope they survived the winter. I live in mid wales near newtown.

  • Comment number 38.

    Hedgehogs. I didn't realise that they were in decline. On Sunday, last, about 9.00pm I noticed something on the lawn under the bird feeder, which hangs from a handy branch. My binoculars showed that it was a Hedgehog which was clearing up the spillage from the bird feeder. I was still watching it when suddenly there was great activity and another Hedgehog galloped into view. It didn't take long to realise that it must be male because of its antics. It would face the first one, which must be a female, and kept nudging her snout with his snout as though he was trying to turn her. She was having none of that and kept head on to him. This carried on for several minutes and I took my eyes off them, looking back a short time later I saw that they had moved closer to where I was and one of them had curled into a ball with the larger one trying to push it over with its snout. However I noticed that there was still one under the bird feeder. So I had 3 hedgehogs in the garden at the same time, I presume one female and two males.

    I saw another hedgehog on Tuesday night, and another one last night during the programme, when you where talking about hedgehogs, I shouted at you telling you that I was looking at one, but you didn't hear me.

    I had set up a recently acquired Trophy Cam XLT last night for the first time, switching on after the programme and saw 2 more visits from hedgehogs during the night. I wonder what tonight will bring.

    Once again Spring Watch is showing us all what is happening all arround us.

    Keep up the good work.

    John Williams

  • Comment number 39.

    your thursday evening program suggested linking gardens to attract hedgehogs by cutting holes as large as 15 inches across. If you do this you will also get cats dogs and everything else that can find access through that large gap. A hole for hedgehogs I would suggest is about 4 inches square. I have a number of these and last year attracted 3 hogs and this year I have a single every night visitor. he comes for a drink in the ground bird bath and the peanuts I spread on the ground for him. observation is via multiple CCTV to the house.

  • Comment number 40.

    Hello Springwatch my friend has hedgehogs in her garden has for years they come as a family sometimes !! and she has made two little arches underneath her back door exit and entrance or maybe male female !!! also she buys special food for them and last night she said she had two hedgehogs in her garden, we live in brightlingsea in essex.
    my friend does know i am telling the world about her hedgehogs !!!

  • Comment number 41.

    Like the person who wrote the post no: 9 I also have a small terrier and I have had a couple of visits from a hedgehog within the last week. Much as I like to have the hedgehog visit us my terrier doesn't and I am afraid she will hurt it. My lurcher respects it and leaves it well alone.
    However, my problem is if this hegehog can get in my terrier will be able to get out and I thought my very small garden was dog proof. So now I will have to try and find the hole and, sorry, block it up.

  • Comment number 42.

    I have been watching the herons on the webcam. They keep on flapping and I hope that they are going to fledge, but to my disappointment they settle back down again.

  • Comment number 43.

    Hi everyone - the gap suggested SHOULD have been approx 5inches, not 15!

    Anyone with concerns about poorly hedgehogs please contact us ASAP - www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk

    Anyone wanting a free pack on Hedgehog Street please go to www.hedgehogstreet.org

    Thank you :o)

  • Comment number 44.

    @Carol Yes, badgers eat hedgehogs. Some have learnt to uncurl them. If you find empty skins in your garden then you've got clever badgers!

    @Val C, yes hedgehogs are big fans of insects, worms, slugs and snails so they'll love mealworms!

    @Tomlyn53 Yes hedgehogs may eat the slug pellets or indeed the poisoned slugs. They're really really dangerous for hedgehogs so try to use alternatives to pellets such as broken eggs shells or rose twigs or nettles around the plants.

    St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital have loads of advice on hedgehogs:
    http://www.sttiggywinkles.org.uk/hedgehogs.html
    http://www.sttiggywinkles.org.uk/images/PDF/PDF%20Fact%20Sheets/Garden%20Hazards%20Affecting%20Hedgehogs.pdf

  • Comment number 45.

    I begin my very own hedgehog watch in our garden every evening - it's far better than watching the TV. Usually around half ten now the nights draw in later the feeding frenzy begins...

    It all started around the same time last year - when we noticed a rather fat hedgehog feeding off of the bird food that had dropped from the feeding station. We started to put out a more suitable hedgehog food and our spiny little friend returned most evenings - and to our delight brought a whole litter of hoglets to our garden too!

    I set up a hedgehog house in our back garden and it was in use over the cold winter months - our hedgehog even did a good job of trying to clear out the debris come this spring - maybe this is a sign that it is getting ready for nesting???

    I am wondering if we will see hoglets this year again - I don't know if we have one of last years offspring returning to feed from the garden this year as s/he looks somewhat smaller than last years prickly visitors. By the way how do you tell males and females apart? One of of hedgehogs has what appears to be a lighter band on thier tummy area.

    If it is last years hoglet, would she be able to reproduce this year? I'd love to see some skittish hoglets tearing round the graden like last summer.

    Would last years offspring split up and go to different areas? Or would they reproduce togther if there were males and females in the litter?

    I fret when I don't see my nightime vistors - you see so many ending up as road casualties...

  • Comment number 46.

  • Comment number 47.

    Apart from the terrible hedgehog-unfriendly weather we have had over the last 6 months, I wonder if some hedgehogs could be being accidently poisoned. Last summer I had rats and mice in my garden (I don't mind) but this year I haven't seen any which makes me suspect that someone is putting poison down.

    Could the programme ask viewers, if they must put poison out, to ensure that it is in a properly designed container which hedgehogs cannot reach?

    PS How long has Charlie been wildlife watching? There was no chance at all of the pine marten coming to the birdtable while he was waving his arms about, as seen by the camera looking into the house!

  • Comment number 48.

    Since watching we have decided our job this weekend is to remove the wire at the bottom of the hedge in our garden, this was originally put in place to stop our puppy escaping into next doors garden, being as he is now fully grown we have decided it is time to try and get the Hedgehogs back!

  • Comment number 49.

    We have a hedgehog visiting our garden and we have walls around so I think if there's a way in the hog will find it. I feed it ( not quite out of my hand ) with hedgehog food from a well-known birdfood supplier , suplemented with mealie worms. I see from the RSPB that peanuts shouldn't be put out at this time of year and can be harmful to young birds so I avoid them. The food is a mix of cereals and dried insects so I think hogs have a very wide diet

  • Comment number 50.

    we've bought a hedgehog house and leave food out everynite, we have at least 1 in the house and about 4 feed everynite in our passage way.

  • Comment number 51.

    I am thinking of getting a sonic cat scarer as a couple of local cats have taken to prowling around my bird feeders in the garden - however I don't want to upset the hedgehogs that visit. Will they be disturbed by the scarer?

  • Comment number 52.

    I live in Dorset the garden backs on to a heath and for the last week at least we have had the pleasure of at least one hedgehog every evening in the garden. They are so delightful, long may they visit.

  • Comment number 53.

    I have lived in my present house for 26 years and always hoped to get a hedgehog in the garden (I have a lot of slugs!). This would be a problem as the garden has walls and fencing all the way round, with no openings. However, last Autumn to my surprise, I saw a hedgehog, then a baby and on the second night there was a parent and two babies. I was so happy, they are such lovely animals. I fed them each night until they hibernated but have not seen them yet this year. How did they get in? Can they climb?

  • Comment number 54.

    WHEN THEY BIULD NEW BYPASS ROADS,MOTORWAYS OR DUAL RDS DONT THEY PUT IN SMALL TUNNLES FOR HEDGE HOGS,.

    IT WOULD COST A GREAT DEAL AT THE START OF CONSTRUCTION.THAT WOULD HELP A POPULATION OF HOGS TO CROSS INTO NEW PLACESWITH OUT THEM BEING HARMED.
    .
    HOW DO YOU MAKE HOGS USE THE TUNNELS?

    NATURE WILL FIND A WAY.

  • Comment number 55.

    I started creating my 'Wildlife Garden' some years ago and last year l had up to 5 Hedgehogs visiting it, this year only counted upto 3 but one from last year was hit by a car and taken to local wildlife hospital where it had to be humanely distroyed as it's spine was broken(lost all use of it's back legs).At various times over the past years l have had visitors such as Red Legged Partridge,SparrowHawk,Jay,Green Woodpecker,Longtailed Tits,Coal Tits,Robins,Wrens,Redwings,Fieldfares,Chiffchaffs,Bluetits,Greenfinches,Goldfinches,Goldcrests,Chaffinches,Sparrows(lots),Starlings(even more!)Song Thrushs,Blackbirds and this year ,the first in a long time a Bullfinch, oh and not forgetting Reed Buntings and Yellowhammers! Thats not bad for a garden that measures about 65ft long by about 35ft wide!!I also have foxes that visit in the evening and night and have a Water container full of frog tadpoles and a resident Toad!

  • Comment number 56.

    I regularly have hedgehogs visit my garden. This week I had three hedgehogs in the garden at the same time. By having our gates slightly higher than the ground they are able to access the garden easily. I feed them occasionally but don't want them to rely on the food, also the cats are tempted if I put it out too often. I have a hedgehog house which I have seen one hedegehog use but it seems to be using it as temporary shelter rather than a home. I think one lives under the shed.

    We also had a kestrel visit and land on our neighbours roof, we had five buzzards circling overhead and a family of Great Tits nest/fledge over the last month.

  • Comment number 57.

    got a shock of my life friday night I was outside on the patio, when walk into a hedhog eating what lhad left for my doormouse which lifes under my wood bunker for last two years. had taken photes of said beasts but are not great to view.

  • Comment number 58.

    When I was on guide camp my friend was hiding on thefloor behind the toilet and a hedgehog ran into her face! The hedgehogs also went through our bags in the tent.

  • Comment number 59.

    Hi PoorlyHedgehog. Those blue pearls are ticks. I had one with 36 in early spring!! Even the rescue centre were gobsmacked as he'd just come out of hibernation and 36 is one hellulva lot of ticks!! They were especially surprised because he was a really good weight for early March, despite the ticks. They had to put him out to get them all safely off and he was kept on a drip for a week and given antibiotics he was so poorly. Fantastic TLC for him. I took him back and re-released him in the garden where he is doing very well (I call him Chunky Eric and can recognise him from a small scar by his eye where they had to take the trickiest tick off) I know he's well because he was, er, courting recently. I have at least five hogs this year so far. Last year I had at least eleven, including six very underweight youngsters in late October which a rescue centre overwintered and released this year. I put it down to the access to my garden. They can come under my back fence from a residential area with no front or back barriers and then fields beyond that. Then one side is a broken fence where they can get access to another garden and other fenced gardens (in fact one is nesting under the shed there, I spent all night listening to a hog building a nest about 3 weeks ago). Then by the side of my house the back gate has a small piece which I removed for my late cat - they pootle through there to yet another area with unfenced gardens. I call it hedgehog spaghetti junction! I'm sure I see so many because they pass through - plus I put down mega quantities of water and mealworms and leave large swathes of long grass and wild flowers and two hedghog boxes which might help! One cold night just before hiberation, there were two small 'hogs in one box and a big fat one in the other! I know they used to take naps in there during the night too. I was going to move house but can't possibly do that now!! I'd be having nightmares about hungry hedgehogs!

  • Comment number 60.

    Itchy and Speedy (Hedgehogs) visited our garden frequently last year, so we put out water, hedgehog food and a hogitat covered with leaves and branches to provide a cosy home. However I think a toad moved in instead...Toad Hall?!

    No sign of them so far this year, but tonight.....Gigantor appeared (a large hedgehog)...I wonder whether its one of the others in disguise?

    howeversince

  • Comment number 61.

    Anna at No. 51. I had a cat problem so I borrowed a sonic repeller, its been in the garden for about 3 weeks and I saw no cats during the day. However as I can now film at night with my new toy, a Trail Cam, I have seen cats every night wandering through at their leisure. I have also seen several Hedgehogs, both in the still light evening 9 o'clockish and several times during the night on their perambulations. So I feel I can quite safely say that the repeller does not seem to work on cats and does not affect hedgehogs either. I will not be buying one after all.

  • Comment number 62.

    I already have and feed hedgehogs, Took 3 to hospital last winter too small but they are OK now.
    I have a photo of a live Mole above ground how do I send it.
    I also have pictures of [my hedgehogs]

  • Comment number 63.

    With regards to the decline in hedgehogs highlighted in last weeks show, I cover about 100 miles per day driving around Norfolk and year on year I see more dead hedgehogs. This year I decided to keep a record of roadkill hedgehogs being careful not to count the same one twice. since 16th March this year I have recorded 104 road fatalities in 61 days driving. bearing in mind the relatively low mileage I do thats a lot of dead hogs :(

  • Comment number 64.

    We live in N Wales ( Snowdonia) and we really need Hedgehogs here, we have loads of slugs and other goodies for them.There is also no problem connecting between gardens etc. But, no Hedgehogs. Does anyone know why?

  • Comment number 65.

    Another way to help is to support Hedgehog Care in Lincolnshire. It is run by one woman (with volunteers when she can get them!) and she always answers her telephone to callers with a hedgehog emergency at any time of day or night. She is a hedgehog expert and will often save hedgehogs that others would have put down. Details can be found at www.hedgehogcare.org.uk

  • Comment number 66.

    Hello SpringWatch Team!

    My 6 year old son was just found his first Hedgehog whilst out on a walk in our local woods! My son was over the moon and so was I because we had not seen any Hedgehogs in a very long time! We were even more excited to see 1 after hearing on the programe that the Hedgehog population had decreased! We think the Hedgehog had just strolled into the wood after coming out of someone back garden (Our local wood is only at the end of our street). My son took plenty of photos of the plump, rather large Hedgehog and we hope to see alot more in the future! My son has also give friend and family advice on how to make our gardens more Hedgehog friendly!

  • Comment number 67.

    Being involved with organising Hedgehog Street it is great to see so many comments and discussion - and the number of people who have already signed up is amazing. For more hedgehog fun and games, have a browse at my blog: http://hedgehoghugh.wordpress.com/

  • Comment number 68.

    We noticed a couple of hedgehogs in the garden around November time, just as it started to snow. As this was a time they should have been hibernating we started to leave some cat food out for them. The numbers seem to have increased to four, two smaller ones. They loved the food and we saw them every couple of nights. We carried on feeding them until end of March beginning of April. Don't see them much now but they are still around, we have a reasonable hole below the gate to the garden, so they are able to go on a night wander.

    They repaided our winter feeding by clearing most of the slugs and snails from the garden.

  • Comment number 69.

    We had 2 hedgehogs in our garden last year. so far, unfortunately, we did not spot them this year. We have a little pond in the garden and heard that it could be dangerous for hedgehogs when they fall in. What can we do to make our pond hedgehog safe?

  • Comment number 70.

    Last week's feature about 'Hedgehog Streets' was very interesting particularly as hog numbers are falling dramatically. However, a perfect opportunity to highlight the wanton destruction caused by the use of slug pellets was sadly squandered. Furthermore, providing access into gardens that are littered with these chemicals would be completely reckless.

    Whilst Chris Packhams t-shirts in support of woodlice and cockroaches were mildly amusing perhaps one condemning the use of pellets would have been a little more apt.

    A potential contravention of 'BBC Compliance' rules maybe?

  • Comment number 71.

    My local hoggie has been visiting while SW is on. How inconsiderate!
    So now SW is sadly over I'm back on HogWatch.

  • Comment number 72.

    This morning I discovered a family of hedgehogs that had made a home in a sack of leaves that I had been collecting up in the garden ready to put out for collection :0 Thank heavens I saw them today! I live in Huntingdonshire, on the edge of a village, so although it is fairly rural, I haven't seen that many hedgehogs around. So having a family of them in my garden is a quite exciting. I have put a sign by the bag announcing that it is now 'hedgehog house', I'll make sure there is water close by, what else can I do to help them? I no longer use slug pellets in my garden!! Awful stuff - has anyone ever seen what it does to the slug? Nasty! GRRRRR.

  • Comment number 73.

    i have a very wildlife garden in semi rural position,as well as a comprehensive,garden bird area,i have badgers and recently young fox cubs ,feeding on the dropped pieces of bird fat balls from 3 fat ball holders.i had hoped all this fallen bird foods would atract the hedgehogs back.but alas i have not seen hedgehogs since when i first moved here 31 years ago when i used to see adults and youngsters on the patio area ,i even heard them giving mating calls under one of the fir trees.hedges and gaps and a running alongside an alley way,gives them and any other wildlife easy access.i hope i will see them again

  • Comment number 74.

    Hi
    I have been very lucky this year to have had at least 5 hedgehogs (Heather, Harriat, Baby, Slinky and Henry) in my garden. I rescued one that had been injured and it now has only 3 legs, but calls nightly for the free food I put out. Please make sure when taking to a vets that they are friendly towards this mammal. some are better than others. I now have a baby hedghog (Tiny) which I will have to catch as its far too small to hibernate and survive.
    Could Autumnwatch do an item on care?

  • Comment number 75.

    I live in Highland Perthshire surrounded by red squirrels and other endangered species but the plight of hedgehogs is perhaps the most worrying of all. Last year I hardly saw any of them either dead or alive. On top of trying to survive the winter, they are confronted by heather burning, farm machinery which leaves them badly maimed, traffic as in other parts of the country, and they are persecuted by gamekeepers who think they eat the pheasant and partridge eggs. I rescued 8 from Uist and some are still pottering around happily, but I would love to do more for these delightful creatures. Please can anybody offer any way of helping them, if not I really believe they may become extinct in this part of Scotland.

  • Comment number 76.

    As a child I remember putting out bread in milk for the spkey fellas - is this still thought to be a good idea?

  • Comment number 77.

    I just realised this article is from last year - I must have been hibernating

  • Comment number 78.

    Can the pickly chaps really fing their way through "hedgehog streets" aka gaps in fences

  • Comment number 79.

    Hey Pedro - my understandingis that hedgehogs snuffle round for grubs and slugs so if you grow veg like I do you'll be giving them a feast should they wander into your garden because Lord knows thats where there are sure to be plenty of slugs noshing my young plants

  • Comment number 80.

    After watching Unsprung last Autumn we regularly weighed all our Hogs to make sure they were the ideal weight for hibernation and all in all found 6 different Hogs. I'd always assumed we got up to 3 so it was a wonderful suprise to know that we had at least 6 coming in. 3 of them had to go to rescues as they were underweight and sadly one died but I'm pleased to see that this spring it's business as usual including a courting couple and interest in the Hog box :)

  • Comment number 81.

    Re: hedgehogs & badgers: They probably favour different environments? Here on cold, wet, flat clayland, - no badgers, I think they like dry sandy banks to burrow. But our hedgehogs still have the problems of strimmers, slug pellets, weird weather, etc., to overcome. I think our foxes take a few, seen an empty skin turned inside-out. Population seems to come and go.

    Was disgusted when the badger-cull enthusiasts started trying to talk-up hedgehog predation as a point in their favour. I think they underestimate the intelligence of their audience.

 

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