10 Ways to Help a Hedgehog
Ten things we can do to help revive the hedgehog population
- Don’t be too tidy in your garden. The leaves and dead branches provide important habitats for the things hedgehogs like to eat.
- Don’t try to kill off the slugs and snails, especially with chemicals and slug pellets. Let the hedgehogs do it for you.
- Try to leave an area of the garden undisturbed. Ask the kids to refrain from running through the leaves and kicking them into the air (hard to resist, I know).
- Make it easy for hedgehogs to get into and out of your garden. They like to forage over a wide area.
- In the autumn build or buy a hedgehog house. You can build one in a couple of hours from an overturned milk crate and some plywood, or you can buy one for around £40.
- Position the hedgehog house in a quiet part of the garden against a bank or a hedge, with the entrance facing away from cold northerly or easterly winds
- Don’t treat the inside of the hedgehog house with creosote or similar. This can be harmful to the inhabitants, particularly any babies.
- Don’t fill the hedgehog house with bedding. Hedgehogs are very good at making their own nests.
- In the early summer when any babies will be born leave out some nourishing snacks. Cat food and a saucer of water is perfect. Do not be tempted by Beatrix Potter’s suggestion of cows milk. It can kill them.
- In the early autumn, check there are no inhabitants by placing a straw across the entrance for a few days. If it’s still there it should be empty. Give it a good scrape out and repair any damage.
If you need more help, there is no better place than our local Tiggywinkles which knows everything there is to know about hedgehogs