Hedgehog Awareness Week this week !

Flora Gregory
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Sun 9 May, 12:13

Thank you everyone who is contacting us about Charlbury hedgehog signs/sightings, it really helps us get an idea of the state of the population here in our town. The big question is do we want our Charlbury hedgehogs to thrive and how do we help them do that ?  

The Quiz Question today is how do humans kill hedgehogs :-( ?

a. Running them over with cars

b. By leaving rubbish around, netting and empty tins. 

c. Poisoning them by using slug pellets containing metaldehyde (toxic to pets and us too), and weed killer. Better to go organic.

d. Burning fires and not checking if a Charlbury Hedgehog has taken residence first.

e. Strimming ! 

f. Hedgehogs can swim but will drown if they can't get out of a pond, so a ramp or beach can save a hedgehog life. 

Sadly hedgehog hospitals are full of injured and sick animals.  These hospitals are usually run by volunteers. We are discussing with one local volunteer hospital the idea of fostering some hedgehogs, but in order for that to be successful we need to find ways of making Charlbury as Hedgehog Friendly as possible.  Please help us. 

The rate of hedgehog decline causes wider concerns about the state of the UK’s ecosystem. They are seen as an indicator species for the health of the natural world because they feed on soil invertebrates, so a big decline in hedgehogs implies the quality of the environment has significantly decreased.

Also, when you meet a hedgehog, you will find they are just incredibly cute (which is why they have such a loyal following). 

Flora Gregory
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Fri 7 May, 13:03 (last edited on Fri 7 May, 13:03)

Hedgehog Awareness Week Continues :-)

With some good news, someone appears to have a potential breeding pair of hedgehogs visiting their garden ! 

In context, a town the size of Charlbury should have about 100 hedgehogs, and perhaps, if we're lucky,  we have might have up to 10. One of the problems, with so few, is how do they actually get to each other in Charlbury ?  We're not making it easy for them.

Quiz Question for today then, on an optimistic note, 'What are baby hedgehogs called ?'

a. Chicks

b. Lambs

c. Hoglets

Flora Gregory
👍 1

Thu 6 May, 07:23

Vote Hedgehog ! 

Quiz Question

What helps your garden be hedgehog friendly ?

a. Artificial grass, a concrete drive, a solid wall or fence and no plants.

b. Hedges, an organic veg patch, wild planting, piles of logs, leaves, a shallow source of water, and lots of access from all your neighbours' gardens !

Flora Gregory
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Tue 4 May, 13:58

If you have seen any or signs of Charlbury Hedgehogs please let us know at CharlburyWildlife@CharlburyGreenHub.org.uk  If you think you may have a hedgehog in your garden but you're not sure, tell tale signs are scat which is dark brown and often shiny from snails shells and beetles in a hedgehog's diet. It is round at one end and tapered at the other, 15-50 mms long and has a smell of linseed oil. https://www.hedgehogstreet.org/about-hedgehogs/tracks-and-signs/

We have small mammal tunnels which pick up paw prints which we can set up for you. 

Quiz Question today !

What Does a Charlbury Hedgehog eat in the wild ?

1. Acorns

2. Corn and potatoes

3. Worms, beetles, slugs and snails, caterpillars, earwigs and millipedes, frogs, carrion, birds' eggs, fallen fruit.  All to be found in our lovely wild Charlbury gardens.

Flora Gregory
👍 2

Mon 3 May, 14:39

Hedgehog Awareness Week  continued (although of course,  it's Hedgehog Awareness Week every week in Charlbury).  

Here's another Quiz Question.

There were an estimated 30 million hedgehogs in the UK in the 1950s. How many do you think there are now ?

a. 30 million

b. 20 million

c. The number of hedgehogs in the UK has declined by half in the last two decades and it is estimated there is less than 1 million. They are now on the IUCN Red List which means they are very vulnerable and heading towards extinction. Every hedgehog in Charlbury is a precious Charlbury Hedgehog.  

Flora Gregory
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Sun 2 May, 13:27

It's Hedgehog Awareness Week again ! Some of our precious Charlbury Hedgehogs are about, if you have seen any or signs of them please let us know at CharlburyWildlife@CharlburyGreenHub.org.uk  

Quiz Question 

How can you encourage our Charlbury Hedgehogs to get into your garden ?

a. Hedgehogs are like Houdini and can wriggle through the minutest chink

b. Hedgehogs can fly over fences

c. Hedgehogs build tunnels like a mole.

d. A 5 inch/13 cm circle through the wall, fence or gate will do nicely. Hedgehogs needs lots of access to as many gardens as possible, as they might travel a mile or two a night. 

Flora Gregory
👍

Sat 9 May 2020, 11:36 (last edited on Sat 9 May 2020, 11:38)

And for anyone who is interested I have written some words in the Charlbury Chronicle which will be with you shortly ! 

Kirlington have been doing some very interesting work on hedgehog access with amazing results, http://www.kirtlingtonvillage.co.uk/kirtlington-hedgehog-street.  And if there is interest someone is happy to come and talk to us about what has been happening in Kirtlington, with amazing footage to share.  There is much we can do to help hedgehogs,  and having a healthy hedgehog population helps the rest of the ecosystem.

There's a big push on, see this

https://www.change.org/p/help-save-britain-s-hedgehogs-with-hedgehog-highways

Flora Gregory
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Sat 9 May 2020, 11:28

Thank you Helen. Please if you see any hedgehogs this year let us know ! I will have a walk through Bayliss Yard, thanks for the tip. 

Helen Chapman
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Wed 6 May 2020, 21:08

I saw a hedgehog last year at the top of Bayliss Yard (opposite the new houses at Elmstead) so they are still around. I've not spotted one yet this year though.

Flora Gregory
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Wed 6 May 2020, 18:18

Thank you Frank ! I love the footage, they looked amazingly healthy, and the eating noises are presumably of them chumping on Spike ! I wonder if there's anything we do to help a recovery in your area ?  Has anyone seen hedgehogs around Crawborough please, can we get hedgehogs into Frank's garden (and other neighbouring gardens) again ?  Thank you again ! 

Frank Payne
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Wed 6 May 2020, 15:41

I’ve gathered some short videos I made in May and June of 2016 of the hedgehogs in our garden in Crawborough and put them on my Adobe server. You can access them at: https://shared-assets.adobe.com/link/3a311ce5-ca0d-45cc-513d-4ec5f13bec72 There are 4 files in a single zip file. Depending on your screen size you will see ‘download’ in the top right corner of the page, or three dots which will open the download command. Three videos were at night in monochrome, and one in daylight in colour, which is better quality. All were made with an infrared trail camera. We regularly had five hedgehogs at once in the garden whilst eating out in the early evening. Sadly I never managed to film all five at once. On many evenings I would watch them coming up Crawborough from what was then the garden at Elmstead and turn into our garden, where we put large quantities of Spike's hedgehog food out for them,  to which they seemed adicted. Also, the pond in the garden was used as a regular drinking source. A year later, 2017 and therafter, we never saw another hedgehog. We had a real sense of loss as they used to entertain us for hours chasing and barging each other, which you can see on a couple of the videos. Their vanishing seemed to coincide with the buidling work for the new houses at Elmstead and made me realise how critical habitat loss is for them.
Flora Gregory
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Tue 5 May 2020, 14:42

If anyone sees or hears any more hedgehogs please let me know ! Thank you !

Flora Gregory
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Mon 4 May 2020, 09:52

Angus and Kim thank you, that's really helpful  and encouraging !  Can you let me know specifically where you have seen them  ? You can text me if it's easier 078027 61779.  If we can build up a picture of where we know there are hedgehogs,  we can see where they are having a problem with access etc.  I'm hoping to put up a BioDiversity map when we get out and about again and then we can all mark sightings of hedgehogs on it (and other things that are having a hard time like frogs, toads, newts, butterflies and other insects...)  Not sure where the map will be yet, perhaps the Corner House. 

Angus B
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Sun 3 May 2020, 19:43

We have one that visits our garden in Rochester Place. 

Kim Sale
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Sun 3 May 2020, 19:12

I'm in Ditchley and we have many hedgehog sightings here. I found one in my compost heap back in January and we overwintered another.i released them both into the garden and wider area mid March and for a few weeks they ate the dog food I put down for them.

Flora Gregory
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Sun 3 May 2020, 18:26

That's amazing Leah that you remembered seeing it and where and so long ago. Thank you for sharing that.  Has anyone else any hedgehog stories or sightings ? 

Leah Fowler
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Sun 3 May 2020, 17:53

It must have been about 1958 , because I got married in 1960 and moved to Sheep Street. garden was surrounded by high walls, can't remember if we have seen them in Market Street.  

Flora Gregory
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Sun 3 May 2020, 16:30

How lucky you were Leah to see one, when was that ?  Poor old hedgehog, it obviously needed a proper hedgehog friend, did you help it find one ?

Leah Fowler
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Sun 3 May 2020, 12:52

When we lived at the Barbers shop our toilet was at the top of the garden,  we had an old fashioned bristled lavatory brush, went up there one day and found a hedgehog making love to the brush,  perhaps that is just one small reason why there are less hedgehogs around. 

Flora Gregory
👍 1

Sun 3 May 2020, 12:32

It's Hedgehog Awareness Week this week. If anyone would like a nice picture of a hedgehog to put in their window or on their fence so that it can be seen from the street, I am very happy to supply one, please let me know ! I just talked with a 4 year old who has never seen a hedgehog...

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