12 reasons why everyone needs to help hedgehogs.

by Henry Johnson, Hedgehog Officer

1. Hedgehogs are cute.

Photo of a hoglet by Sonora CaseSUPER cute.

Hoglet photo by Hedgehog Champion David Cooper2. Hedgehogs are in big trouble...

We've lost a third of all our hedgehogs in the last ten years.

Hedgehogs are currently declining in Britain at the same rate as tigers are around the world - about 5% per year.

→ How do we know hedgehogs are declining?

3. They play a vital part in our ecosystem.

When an ecosystem loses an animal, it becomes more vulnerable to invasion by invasive species and more likely to collapse (= not good).

4. Hedgehogs are deeply rooted in our culture.

This hedgehog is from an Egyptian tomb and is 3,800 years old!

Egyptian hedgehog from a tomb from the the XII Dynasty-early XIII Dynasty in the Brooklyn Musem

Hedgehog, ca. 1938-1700 B.C.E. Faience, 1 5/8 x 1 5/8 x 2 13/16 in. (4.2 x 4.1 x 7.1 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 65.2.1. Creative Commons-BY

...there's always Mrs Tiggywinkle too, obvy.

Source: Wikipedia

5. Hedgehogs can thrive in towns and cities.

Monster hedgehog in South London

Street hedgehog in trendy Shoreditch

Hedgehogs can exist at ten times the densities in towns than the wider countryside

6. And alongside our pets...

Cats and hedgehogs get along just fine

Hedgehogs can get along with most dogs

7. Hedgehogs outlived the sabre-toothed tiger.

Roar! Well, not quite. Hedgehogs are mild mannered beasts

ROAR!

(The ancestors of the modern hedgehog evolved around 20 million years ago, when wooly mammoths and sabre-toothed tigers bounced around.)

8. Hedgehogs are excellent mothers.

Alan Lochhead uploaded this incredible photo of a mother hedgehog moving her hoglets to a new nesting site, much as a tiger would!

9. A baby hedgehog is called a hoglet.

Lyndsey Smith got her parents to make a hole in their fence - and hoglets turned up.

10. Hedgehog footprints look like little handprints.

Footprints are one of the most reliable ways of looking for hedgehogs

11. You can make a little house for hedgehogs in your garden.

Our Hedgehog Champions have built or bought over 3929 hedgehog houses since 2011! Cor blimey!

12. But most of all, people love hedgehogs.

Oscar's mad for them.

Hedgehog Champion Oscar with his super snowhog

And Brooke's on board.

Brooke holding one of our cool Hedgehog Highway signs, available from PTES and BHPS online shops...

They were recently voted our most popular wild animal (not for the first time)

Hoglet with his tongue out by Annne Whitehead

So....how can I help?