The Importance of Hedgehog Highways
Many gardens are now inaccessible for hedgehogs, especially in new build homes. A hedgehog highway, which could be as simple as holes in fences or gaps under gates, will allow hogs to get in and out of gardens and so will allow them to search for food.
“Hedgehogs have lost so much of their natural habitat, if everyone linked their gardens with a 13 by 13 cm gap in their garden fences it would help hedgehogs regain a vital resource for food.”
Hedgehogs can cover two miles in a night, a hedgehog highway in the whole neighbourhood will allow the hog to roam away from the roads.
“So, that’s why we need hedgehog highways linking gardens in our neighbourhoods, It will link them with other hedgehogs, give them areas to forage, find a mate, makes nests, and to have their young. “There is nothing nicer than the pitter patter of hoglets across the patio on a warm summers evening.”
Hedgehogs that do visit your garden can be supported by feeding them with cat/kitten kibble. As this is a dry food, it is important that there is plenty of water in shallow bowls dotted around the garden. Amanda added a warning about food, she said:
“Please avoid feeding hedgehogs mealworms, sunflower hearts and peanuts. These foods give them something called metabolic bone disease, this is extremely painful and will lead to death.”
Sadly, it is on our roads that most people see hedgehogs, it is impossible for the hogs to avoid them. Amanda said that Wixams has many hedgehogs, and it would be great if Wixams, and all the towns and villages in Bedfordshire had ‘Hedgehog Awareness‘ signs to help to slow drivers down.
What should someone do if they come across a hedgehog in the road? Amanda said:
“Your safety is the most important thing, don’t go into the road if is not safe for you to do so. “If you do move it, move it to the verge and not away from the area as it knows where to get food and water. An unfamiliar area could cause problems for the hedgehog.”
As hedgehogs often carry parasites, Amanda recommends using gloves, or perhaps a tea towel, to handle the hedgehog. This will also help to protect you from the prickly spines.