Northumberland Hedgehog Rescue takes in hoglets and warns gardeners to be cautious this summer

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Northumberland residents are being urged to take care in their gardens following the rescue of some young hedgehogs.

After four hoglets were disturbed and abandoned by their mum at the St Mary’s housing estate near Stannington, Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue is warning gardeners to be careful with their tools.

The babies were taken to the rescue centre, where they are being looked after, but the incident sparked a message of caution and tips on how to garden safely.

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Carol Catchpole, founder of Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue, said: “It’s a big issue at this time of the year because babies are being born. If you disturb the family then mum could run away, and we are left to hand feed the babies. The formula of milk we use is excellent, but it's never as good as mum's natural milk.

Four hoglets were abandoned and then rescued after a gardening incident. Picture: Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue - Eamonn.Four hoglets were abandoned and then rescued after a gardening incident. Picture: Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue - Eamonn.
Four hoglets were abandoned and then rescued after a gardening incident. Picture: Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue - Eamonn.

“If you're digging up a shrub, look underneath it first to make sure there’s not a family nesting under there. If you’re going into your compost heap, don’t go straight in with a fork and start pulling out the compost because that’s an ideal place for a family to nest and don’t go in with a strimmer until you’ve checked that the area is safe to strim.

“If you can watch from behind a window that would be ideal and just make sure that mum does return to the babies because most of them will.”

Hedgehogs are endangered and in decline in both rural and urban areas, with a big factor being ‘tidy gardeners’ removing ‘messy’ habitats. Their peak season for giving birth is in June and July.

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