As Bonfire night approaches and celebrations are taking place, please be aware that some local wildlife may have found a home in your bonfire and leaf piles. One of these animals, in particular, are the British Hedgehogs. Hedgehogs gain their names from where they build their nests in hedges, bushes and shrubs. As the Autumn leaves are beginning to fall and the winter temperatures are slowly approaching, hedgehogs are beginning to look for the perfect spot to hibernate from November to the middle of March. Hedgehogs have experienced a high level of habitat destruction over the years due to walls and enclosed gardens which has limited their foraging options as well as, area to hibernate in. A bonfire pile often looks like an appealing place for hedgehogs to hibernate and are often put in danger because of this. Hedgehogs will often roll up in a ball as a protective response and not escape out of danger or will get injured whilst escaping rapidly.
Paradise Wildlife Park has had a long-standing connection with Shepreth Wildlife Conservation Charity where they have a Hedgehog Hospital to help rehabilitate wild hedgehogs back into the local countryside. Here at Paradise over the years, we have assisted with this rehabilitation with hedgehogs through them spending time in our Hedgehog Rehabilitation area as well as, donating annually to the Shepreth Wildlife Conservation Charity for them to continue with their dedicated work.
British Hedgehogs are declining rapidly and are in increasing danger of being lost throughout the British countryside. These incredible nocturnal animals can travel up to two miles in one evening foraging for food and are an essential part of the British ecosystem. Through continuous efforts from charities such as Shepreth Wildlife Conservation Charity, we hope hedgehogs will flourish again.