UK Registered Charity Number 1178929
The UK has seen a rapid
decline in hedgehogs with numbers falling by about half since the
turn of the century which means hedgehog numbers are likely to
stand at under a million.
In 2020 Hedgehogs were included on the Red List for British Mammals which means they are now classified as vulnerable to extinction.
Holderness Hedgehog Hospital
(HHH) was set up in 2016 to help address a shortage of local
specialist rescues in the area, as well as to help educate people
on the species.
Our aims are to educate the public and to rescue, rehabilitate and release as many hedgehogs as possible.
Since 2016 we have grown and grown and after a lot of hard work we became a charity in the summer of 2018.
We now have a number of satellite rescues within the East Riding including: Preston, Hutton Cranswick, Walkington, Burton Pidsea and Skeffling.
Everyone involved with HHH is a volunteer, without their continued support and commitment we would not be able to continue.
We have 9 assessors who triage and administer lifesaving first aid to hedgehogs that come into the rescue, plus a large group of amazing volunteers.
Our educational talks are very important to us. We have spoken to groups such as schools, scouts, WI and wildlife groups.
These allow us to engage with the public and get them involved in trying to save our prickly friends.
If you would like us to visit your organisation, then please contact us.
Consistent fundraising is important to ensure every hedgehog which comes through the rescue has the best opportunity in life.
HHH is self-funded and we usually host events such as craft fairs, take part in car boots, have regular raffles, have food donation bins in supermarkets and ask local business for support.
What to do if you find a hedgehog that needs help.
Hedgehogs are hardy little things that will keep going no matter how ill they are or until they collapse.
We receive lots of calls about hedgehogs that are out during the day, have injuries or for advice if a nest is disturbed, when or if to intervene and what to do.
Hedgehogs are nocturnal so they should not be out during the day.
There are a few exceptions such as:
A female with young, she may be moving nest sites, having a break or looking for food.
If this is the case she will be moving with purpose or have young in her mouth.
Some also wake at dusk to look for food or are still about at first light. Young hedgehogs may leave the nest for a short time before returning , again this isn't anything to worry about as long as the hedgehog looks and is acting normally.
It can be very confusing but that's why we are here.
If you are unsure you can call us or your nearest rescue and we will advise you on what to do. (Click here)
If you do see a hedgehog out during the day or you have concerns, remember hedgehogs do not sunbathe and they shouldn't wobble when walking.
If it's trapped, a baby or it has an injury it will need help.
Not all hedgehog issues are visible, they can have an overburden of internal parasites and have a cough or what seems like cold.
If a hedgehog does need rescuing you will need a high sided box as they are very good at climbing and escaping.
Something to cover it such as a towel or fleece and somewhere it can go away from sunlight and flies.
There are diseases that can pass from hedghogs to us and precautions must be taken so gloves, towel or similar should be used to pick the hedgehog up.
Please do not wait to make the call or try to look after them yourself.
We're very excited as we now have our own adoption pack available.
By adopting a hedgehog as a gift or for yourself you will be helping us rescue even more hedgehogs.
Your adoption will last 12 months and for a one off payment of £25 you will receive your adoption card telling you all about your hedgehog's story.
You will also be sent via e-mail, quarterly news letters with updates on their story and helpful tips, advice and other hedgehog stories.
If you would like to adopt a hedgehog please contact us via our e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
How to help
What you can do to help and encourage hedgehogs into your garden:
Having hedgehogs visit you is amazing, you get to watch them and you may even be lucky enough for them to make your garden their home.
You may already have visitors but you've just not seen them, look out for signs such as hedgehog poo.
Firstly they need to be able to get access into your garden. Create hedgehog highways between gardens, these need to be the size of a CD case and be made in fences, gates or even walls but have a look around your garden, you may already have them in place, check the gaps under gates etc. Highways allow hedgehogs more opportunity to find food, mates and nesting sites.
Make your garden a sanctuary
Leave a small area of your garden to nature, let the grass grow long and sow wildflower seeds. This provides good coverage for hedgehogs to hide and to nest in plus food from the visiting insects.
Make your garden a safe place by covering drain holes, ensuring there is an escape ramp from ponds and tidy up rubbish that could trap or entangle hedgehogs.
Provide a nesting box: Nesting boxes offer hedgehogs a home to rest during the day, to rear their young and to hibernate during winter. These can be shop bought or home made using what you already have such as: bricks and a paver, a gap under a shed or a wood pile. Make sure it is out of direct sunlight and prevailing winds and place them under shrubs or trees for protection from the weather.
Provide food and water daily
Hedgehogs often struggle to find enough food and water on their nightly forage so providing it daily makes their life a little easier. Its also a great way to encourage hedgehog visitors into your garden.
Hedgehogs like puppy, dog, kitten and cat tinned food, preferably not fish flavour as they are not keen and often leave it. They prefer jelly and paste tinned food as the gravy type food can give them an upset tummy.
They also like cat or kitten biscuits (not dog biscuits as they can often be too big)
Using a feeding station keeps the food out of the weather and it can also stop other animals such as cats from getting to the food. These can be home made using what you already have: such as a plastic tub, wood or just place under a table or chair.
Do not leave out milk, hedgehogs are lactose intolerant and giving them milk will kill them.
Mealworms are also very harmful: they cause metabolic bone disease and robs the bones of calcium and makes them weak. It causes suffering and will ultimately result in the hedgehogs death.
Other dangerous foods include sunflower hearts and peanuts.
Bread has no nutritional value at all.
Always check before using a strimmer or lawn mower in long grass or weeds, also check compost heaps before forking over. It only takes a few minutes and it could save a hedgehogs life.
Check before carrying out any major garden work such as removing sheds, decking and landscaping gardens. Hedgehogs dont always nest in the most appropriate places and love to hide and nest under many things for shelter.
Ensure fruit netting and anything else that could trap a hedgehog is kept up off the ground and stored safely when not in use.
Do not use pesticides, these can kill hedgehogs and other wildlife that eat the poisoned bugs. Slug pellets are also dangerous as the hedgehog can eat the poisoned slug
If you have any questions please ask, we are happy to help and advise you.
How to volunteer
HHH is run by volunteers and we wouldnt be able to continue without them.
If youd like to be involved, becoming a volunteer is easy: You can be involved as little or as much as you like and all you need to do is request to join our Facebook volunteers page (link here). Please remember to answer the questions and complete the form as it will affect your request if these are left blank.
There are so many ways you can help as a volunteer:
Help with emergency rescues
Become a foster carer (all year or over winter)
Help with transport to the assessors or vets
Help at events
Collection points for food donation bins
Garden checks / advice
Plus so much more.
Spring will soon be here and so the cycle of the hedgehogs year begins:
During Spring hedgehogs start
to wake from hibernation: Males are usually the first to wake.
It takes a lot of energy to wake up and they will be hungry and very thirsty having lived off their body fat while asleep. They can lose up to a 1/3 of their weight while asleep and you can help waking hedgehogs by providing food and water to supplement their natural diet.
There will be a lot of hedgehog activity during spring as they build up the body fat they have lost during winter. They will also be on the lookout for nesting sites as they often have more than one. You can encourage hedgehogs to nest in your garden by providing a house, shelter, or create a log pile they can build a nest in. You can also leave bedding materials about for them such as dry leaves.
Soon hedgehogs will start to think about breeding. During the mating season you may hear grunting noises or see males circling females, this can go on for hours. Once they have mated the males leaves and has no part in rearing the hoglets.
Unfortunately Covid-19 has hit us hard: all fund raising events have been cancelled and we, like many other animal rescues are not eligible for support from the government.
During 2020 we rescued almost 600 hedgehogs, 77 of which are staying with us over winter and will be released in spring this year.
Thats an increase of almost 400 hedgehogs compared to 2019.
Easy fund raising
Last updated 21/02/2021 08:38
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