Hedgehog numbers in the UK have declined by up to half since the year 2000. It is now estimated that there are fewer than 1 million left. Hedgehogs begin to hibernate from November. Bonfire night can be a dangerous time for hedgehogs. Bonfires tend to be made from natural materials which hedgehogs use to hibernate in. The University is a Gold award accredited Hedgehog Friendly Campus and we want to share with our community some tips on how to avoid harming hedgehogs this bonfire night:

  • Build your bonfire on the day that you will be lighting it – this will decrease the chances of hedgehogs crawling underneath it.
  • Move bonfires before lighting them – if you are building a bonfire before the 5 November, move it a few metres to check if there are hedgehogs hiding underneath it.
  • Check bonfires before lighting – if you can’t move your bonfire, please check them for hedgehogs.
  • Place the bonfire on open ground, never on a pile of leaves, as a hedgehog may be hiding underneath.
  • Check the entire bonfire for hedgehogs before lighting. They tend to hide in the centre and bottom two feet.

What to do if you find a hedgehog?

Hedgehogs are nocturnal mammals and, if seen out during daylight hours, may be in trouble. If you see a hedgehog out during the day, contact the British Hedgehog Preservation Society on 01584 890801 for advice and (if required) details of your nearest hedgehog rescue.

Become a hedgehog champion

You can learn more about hedgehogs and become a part of hedgehog community by becoming a hedgehog champion. If you have a hedgehog in your garden, don’t forget to mark it on the big hedgehog map.