How you can help hedgehogs, beside supporting Army

Alf
Alf

One of the 2016 Jam Jar Army charities has shared some tips on how everyone can help hedgehogs this springtime.

Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue Trust, based in Longframlington, is sharing this year’s campaign with Abbeyfield in Alnwick.

This is the time of year when hedgehogs begin to stir again and are coming out of hibernation.

The Trust has already had new patients arriving at the centre in need of help due to being emaciated after their long sleep and also being hypothermic. One new patient, Alf, has made an amazing recovery after he was found on a grass verge by a dog weighing just 429g.

If we are going to reverse the decline in the hedgehog population, everyone can do something to help – it really doesn’t require a huge commitment.

Just placing a dish of meat variety cat/dog food, either wet or dry, and a dish of water out each evening will not only encourage hedgehogs to come into the garden, but also give you a willing assistant to dispose of your slugs and snails.

People are sometimes concerned about using cat/dog food in case it could encourage the local cat population to visit their garden and, as an alternative, the Trust would suggest using dried mealworms or crushed peanuts (please crush the peanuts as a hedgehog can choke on a whole one).

If you don’t already do this, charity founder Carole Catchpole would encourage you to start, especially now, as they’re really desperate to build up the fat reserves depleted during hibernation.

l Last year’s Jam Jar Army beneficiary – the Shannon appeal run by Amble Lifeboat Fundraisers, which aims to raise £200,000 to bring a state-of-the-art Shannon-class lifeboat to the harbour town – raised a final total of £4,104.63 in jam jars.