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Garden Wildlife - Hedgehog

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sgoldswo:
We realised that the crashing about in the garden wasn't actually our cat causing chaos as usual, but rather a hedgehog looking for food.
_DSC5470-Edit.jpg by Simon Goldsworthy, on Flickr


In a bid to be obliging we acquired some hedgehog food, and the next night he came back and looked very happy with himself...
_DSC5475-Edit.jpg by Simon Goldsworthy, on Flickr


In our old house in Enfield there was a hedgehog who sadly disappeared after a year or two, so it's quite nice when you see hedgehogs in the garden, given the news these days always seems to be about how much they are struggling. This one was clearly enjoying the food.


_DSC5472-Edit.jpg by Simon Goldsworthy, on Flickr

Editor:
Great pictures, as always. What are you feeding it?

sgoldswo:
Thanks David, we were feeding it "Wild Things" hedgehog food. It's supposed to be appealing to hedgehogs (amongst other contents it includes dried fruit, mealworms etc) but unappealing to cats.

Aqila:
Lovely pictures!

We have a pair in the garden too.  There seem to be very few slugs around this year - presumably because the hedgehogs are eating them.  To supplement their diet and make sure they they aren't going short we are throwing a handful of dried meal worms out on the lawn each night - they love them!  Make sure you put water out too - dehydration can be a big killer for hedgehogs.

The other big danger for hedgehogs is strimmers!!  Two years running we had hedgehogs in the garden with terrible wounds across the top of their heads.  This happens because they roll-up at the approaching danger.  I managed to catch one and take it to the vet to be put out of its misery.  We don't use strimmers, so this would have happened in a neighbouring garden. 

There seem to be a trend to use as much machinery in the garden as possible.  I've seen/heard a few local "gardening" companies just descend on gardens with every electrical device possible and blitz the place on a regular basis.

Please stop using strimmers, and get your gardener to stop too.  Hedgehog numbers have declined by 1/3 in the last 2 years alone, and we have only a fraction of the number we had 10 years ago.

epiphany:
Superb photos.......


Some useful advice about hedgehogs, including information about slug pellets -


http://www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk/leaflets/L4-Helping-Hedgehogs.pdf


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