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An Information Piece on: Hedgehog Deaths on Our Roads.

Copied with kind permission from Hedgehog and Hoglets Rescue.

The sad fact is that between 100 & 300,000 hedgehogs are killed on our roads every year, making their nightly forays fraught with danger. Rural roads are particularly risky because they are poorly lit and and have higher speed limits than urban roads,  (PTES, 2018).

Research carried out by Forest Research UK in 2020 confirmed that July is the worst month for hedgehog deaths and these were mostly found to be just before driving into a village or town, prior to the 30mph speed limit. These hedgehogs were young and weren't long out of the nest, their inexperience and inert instincts of rolling in a ball as a defence strategy only adding to their demise.

I found the hedgehog in these photos in a classic situation on Newton Road in Great Ayton a year ago on the approach to the main road through the village. You can see the 30mph sign just ahead of it, the road is on a slight hill before you reach this sign. 

It is sad to think this hedgehog could have been one that came through our rescue and spent weeks in rehabilitation only to be released and killed a week later. This must be true for all rescues. They take their chances ofcourse but how can we mitigate those risks?

1) Be aware of your speed coming in or out of a town or village

2) Be alert whilst driving, particularly in the dark, think hedgehog (watch the video in earlier post of Wayne waiting for hog to cross road)

3) Open up access between you and your neighbours gardens with a 13cm square hole in your fences, this reduces the need for hedgehog road crossing

4) Sign up to Hedgehog Street online and record hedgehog sightings (living and dead) This research is vital to inform future strategies. Check out

If you notice that there are local building developments proposed near you please enquire what the builders are doing to support wildlife access, tell them the Hedgehog is listed as a Species of Principal Importance in England under the Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 s 41. This law makes hedgehogs a material consideration for Local Planning Authorities during the planning process.( refer to Hedgehogs and Development from the BHPS and PTES ). If they are doing nothing then please do file your objection, and get your neighbours on board too.

Contact your local hedgehog rescue and see if they will help with SLOW HEDGEHOG signs that could be placed in people's gardens whilst being visible from the road

If you notice many hedgehog road deaths in your area then start to collate evidence to apply for the proper DVLA hedgehog road sign. This is apparently a long process and you would need to have proper bona fide evidence with dates, times, witnesses etc over a period of time. These photo's for example show evidence of a hedgehog death just before the 30mph sign



*slow down image courtesy of Paul Stockham*


This page was last updated on 19-Nov-2022 09:30:50.

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