3 ISSUES FOR JUST £3 Subscribe to Hampshire Life today click here

How you can help hedgehogs in Hampshire this autumn

PUBLISHED: 10:34 26 October 2015 | UPDATED: 10:34 26 October 2015

Photo: Tom Marshall

Photo: Tom Marshall

Archant

This autumn, spare a thought for our prickly garden visitors says Deborah Griffiths, Education and Engagement Assistant at The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

Hedgehogs are now disappearing from our countryside as fast as tigers are worldwide – a shocking state of affairs for a species that was once a common sight in UK gardens. It’s not just hedgehogs in decline, many of our common native wildlife such as house sparrows and starlings are all disappearing from our green spaces due to a variety of reasons, including loss of habitat.

While hedgehogs are suffering in rural areas, some are taking sanctuary in many of our suburban neighbourhoods. With some 15 million gardens in the UK, covering an area larger than all the UK’s National Nature Reserves put together, we have a great opportunity right on our doorsteps to help the humble hog.

Wild About Gardens Week is an annual celebration of garden wildlife hosted by The Wildlife Trust. This October we will be teaming up with the Royal Horticultural Society and the Hedgehog Street campaign to raise awareness of the hedgehog’s plight and encourage everyone to look out for them in our gardens. 


There are some simple steps you can take to help hedgehogs this autumn:

1 - Create hedgehog highways

Hedgehogs need to be able to roam far and wide in search of food, mates and nesting sites – racking up between 1-2km per night. Get together with your neighbours to cut a 13cm2 (5in2) hole in your fence or dig a channel beneath your garden boundaries to connect your gardens. You can pledge to make a hole in your fence and map it at www.hedgehogstreet.org, joining the online community who are taking action in your neighbourhood.

2 - Avoid the use of pesticides

Ditch the slug pellets and avoid the use of pesticides. Hedgehogs are natural pest controllers and need a plentiful and varied supply of invertebrate prey to stay healthy. The higher the number of hedgehogs in your garden, the lower the number of pests – leading to healthier plants and flowers.

3 - Provide nesting sites

Log and leaf piles, wilderness areas and purpose-built hedgehog homes make great places for hedgehogs to nest and hibernate. Fallen leaves also make the perfect nesting material, so make sure you don’t clear all of these away. If you are cleaning away leaves and garden waste, make sure you check thoroughly to prevent any disturbance to our hibernating hogs. You can even try and make your own hedgehog house with nothing more than a cardboard box, newspapers, grass and a carrier bag. General wildlife-friendly gardening tips, like using mulch and compost, allowing areas to grow wild, and growing bee-friendly flowers also help. 


Hedgehogs might be declining, but with some small steps, together we can make sure hedgehogs have a home in our gardens now and for the future. To find out more about hedgehogs and how to make your garden a little wilder, visit www.wildaboutgardens.org.uk.









READ ON

Hampshire walk around Longstock and Danebury Hill - Follow Steve Davison as he heads to the Test Valley and the village of Longstock for a wander up Danebury Hill

More from Out & About

Yesterday, 10:31

10 of best photos of Hampshire shared on Instagram over the past week...

Read more
Tue, 09:55

This year Winchester’s Theatre Royal celebrates the 40th anniversary of its re-opening as a performance theatre

Read more
Mon, 15:30

Avon Valley, Beer and Cake is the ABC of why Ringwood, a busy market town on the western edge of the New Forest, makes a quirkily clever choice for a break away

Read more
Monday, September 10, 2018

Lego enthusiast Duncan Titmarsh has built his business brick by brick; from tinkering in his garden shed to internationally acclaimed sculptures

Read more
Monday, September 10, 2018

New Forest ponies are an iconic sight, yet modern-day pressures pose a constant threat to the traditional landscape. Viv Micklefield heads to Lyndhurst to take stock of what happens inside England’s oldest forest court

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

From Austen’s treasures to castles built by Henry VIII, Heritage Open Days (6-9 and 13-16 September 2018) allow you to step behind the doors of some of the county’s most iconic but hidden premises.

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

With the New Forest, South Downs and a picturesque coastline, Hampshire is an amazing place for a walk. We round up a few of our favourites

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

We round up some of the best events and things to do across Hampshire this month

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

If there’s one thing we love to do here at Hampshire Life, it’s to celebrate local produce! So here are a selection of some of the best farm shops across the county where you’ll find just that

Read more
Tuesday, August 28, 2018

With a vibrant local community, this is a shining example of a true Hampshire village

Read more
Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Coeliac disease affects 1 in 100 people, and many more are seeing the health benefits after waving goodbye to gluten. Here are just a few of the county’s cafes, pubs and producers who are embracing the gluten free way

Read more
Monday, August 20, 2018

Looking for some peace and tranquility this summer? Lose yourself in one of these wonderful gardens

Read more
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

The castles and forts around the county make for a fascinating ghost hunt by night, and a fun family trip by day

Read more
Tuesday, August 14, 2018

When Southsea’s South Parade Pier closed in 2012, derelict and a shadow of its former glory days, who’d have thought that six years on it would be Pier of the Year

Read more
 
A+ South & South West

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Our Privacy Policy


Latest Competitions & Offers

Topics of Interest

Food and Drink Directory

Subscribe or buy a mag today


subscription ad

Local Business Directory



Property Search