The world is a place in which danger lurks around every corner. Whether you are a human or an animal, there’s no denying that it can be a seriously dangerous and perilous place. Referring to animals, they are unfortunately on the decline all the time. As some groups of humans fight to save some animals, others start to decline in numbers. Whales and polar bears are the most popular you probably hear about. But, an animal that you may not know about that is currently in decline is the hedgehog.
Although the study in question refers to the U.K., it’s something that is happening all around the world. Hedgehogs are in decline, and it’s happening at a rapid rate. Starting out with three million of the cute critters that number dipped drastically once the results of the study got revealed. No longer are hedgehogs in the multiple millions. Today, that number dropped to a mere one million. Since the 1950s, the population had gone down from that healthy three million to the one million mark.
It’s a disturbing trend that needs to be examined more closely. Moreover, you may be wondering how you can help these little guys get back up to a healthy number. Luckily, there are ways in which you can contribute to stopping hedgehog decline in the world.
Easy Access to Your Garden
One of the reasons that hedgehogs are declining deals with the differences in urban and rural areas. You would think that rural areas would be an excellent place for creatures such as hedgehogs. And, while you aren’t entirely wrong with that line of thinking, the problem lies more in the intensive farming in these areas than the actual areas themselves.
So, one of the ways in which you can help the hedgehogs is to give them easy access to your garden. No, they won’t mess with your food in the garden. Instead, the hedgehog will end up linking this place to another habitat. In other words, it acts as a place the hedgehog can go if problems arise in the wilderness. It also gives the animal new foraging ground. By just keeping a small opening in your garden, you can stop hedgehog decline.
Leave Some of Your Garden “Wild”
This may go against the typical thinking of planting a garden. After all, aren’t gardens supposed to be tidy? Yes, the garden can still be neat even if you leave small areas unkempt. Utilize a corner of the garden and pile it with some leaves and logs. It acts as an invitation for the hedgehog and provides a cozy place to sleep.
Not only will the hedgehog have a sweet little spot to rest in, but the place will also attract invertebrates that hedgehogs eat. Again, don’t be afraid. Your garden will be exquisite, and the hedgehog shouldn’t get into trouble in it.
Make Your Garden Welcoming
If you go over to a friend’s house and they open their refrigerator to you, you are probably eager to return there soon. Likewise, hedgehogs will love if you leave out food and water for them. Depending on the landscape, the hedgehog may have a hard time finding food and water. Doing this will not only make your garden inviting, but you will also be helping them live by giving them sustenance through the food and water.
A couple points to note is that you need to give them water and not milk. Milk gives the little guys diarrhea, so be wary. It’s also nice to provide them with tinned dog or cat food or specialty hedgehog food. Either way, you will make their day.
Be Safe When Landscaping
This may be something you may not have even thought of, but it’s something that you need to be aware of when you are inviting hedgehogs to your garden. If you do extend that invitation, you need to realize that they could be there at any time of the day. Whether it’s midnight or three in the afternoon, the hedgehogs may wander out of the garden and into your yard.
If this happens, you need to be aware of them when mowing. You will suffer from a broken heart if you accidentally end up running over one of them. You mean well, so be sure to look before you mow.
Build a Small Shelter
Kudos to you if you leave small pieces of wood and leaves for the hedgehogs to cuddle in. If you want to go that extra mile, then you can also build a small hedgehog house. You don’t need many supplies, and it doesn’t need to be extra spacey. It only needs to be a small and compact shelter.
You can even put the food and leaves in there if you want!
Help the Hedgehogs
Their decline is important. It’s another species that may become extinct if help and support don’t materialize soon. Instead of shooing them out of your yard, show them some love and follow one or all the steps above that you see fit. You will help them survive and assist the environment as well by keeping a species alive!