What is happening to our hedgehogs?

Fortunately hedgehogs continue to visit my own garden… difficult to estimate as I have not perhaps been there as much after dark compared to last year, but certainly a presence. A decline from 36 million odd to 1 million odd seems enormous…testimony to the often nearly hidden declines of wildlife populations that proceed apace in our supposedly more environmentally conscious age.

James Common

It has been over a year since a hedgehog last visited my garden, and longer still since my last chance encounter in the rural surroundings of my hometown. Sadly, it seems that for me at least, the days of hungry hogs sharing supper on the patio or gobbling up slugs on the lawn, have well and truly passed. The glaring decline of hedgehogs here, in my own suburban garden, mirroring a woeful trend observed nationwide. As this much-loved, familiar and endearing species teeters on the brink of extinction in all corners of Britain.

The decline of hedgehogs in British gardens was recently confirmed by a survey conducted by the RSPB. Here, 139,000 properties were surveyed across England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, revealing that one quarter of gardens (some 34,000 or so) recorded no sightings of hedgehogs throughout the entire year. With this figure rising to thirty-percent in Scotland…

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