How to help hedgehogs

Nora the explorer! Trumpington Meadows

Hedgehogs, one of our most beloved UK mammals, are in decline. Here's how to help them

Armed with up to 7,000 sharp spines, sprints up to 2 metres a second, able to climb walls and swim ponds - there's more to the humble hedgehog than you might think. But despite these superheroic qualities, hedgehogs are under threat. Their numbers have declined by about 30% since the millennium.

There are ways to help them, however.

  • Create 'Hedgehog Highways'. Get together with your neighbours to put holes in your fences to connect your gardens. - Adding a Hedgehog Highway sign will help others know the hole is intentional!
  • You can add your Hedgehog sightings and Hedgehog Highways to the Big Hedgehog Map, this will help conservation efforts and help influence decision makers.
  • Let hedgehogs provide your pest control. Avoid the use of pesticides in your garden, especially slug pellets.
  • Provide nesting sites. Log and leaf piles and purpose-built hedgehotels make great places for hedgehogs to hibernate over the winter. 
  • Clear away litter and anything a hog might get trapped in.
  • Put out food and water.
  • Hedgehogs are great swimmers but they can drown if they become trapped in a steep-sided pond. Provide a ramp or create shallow edges at the edge of your pond for easy exit.
  • Drive carefully at night when hogs are out and about.
  • Don't strim or mow without checking for sleeping or resting hogs. 
  • Become a member of the Wildlife Trust and support our work creating nature recovery networks.
There are now thought to be only 1 million hedgehogs in the entire UK