|Protect our prickly friends on Guy Fawkes night|
|News - Climate Change News|
|Thursday, 25 October 2012 10:28|
Residents are being urged to watch out for hedgehogs before they light their bonfire on Guy Fawkes night.
In a bid to halt declining numbers, the Carmarthenshire’s Biodiversity Partnership is asking locals to take special care and search their bonfire for the prickly friends before they light up on November 5. The friendly creatures have been known to use unlit bonfires as cosy winter hibernation locations.
The partnership’s Isobel Macho said: “Hedgehogs are great friends to gardeners and natural slug control. Many people start building their bonfires well before bonfire night allowing hedgehogs (and other small animals) time to investigate and start using these inviting woodpiles. Obviously lighting these without taking special care can mean that many hedgehogs are killed.”
Hedgehog numbers are in decline due to a loss of habitat, development pressures, possible loss of food sources due to intensive farming and the possible effects of slug pellets. They are nocturnal creatures and are only visible during the day if injured. They are on the UK Biodiversity Action Plan list of species in need of conservation and greater protection.
The council’s partnership is currently carrying out a study to find out how many hedgehogs there are and where they occur. Throughout the year, the Wildlife Trust of South and West Wales, on behalf of the Carmarthenshire Biodiversity Partnership, has been collecting details of hedgehog sightings. Very few sightings have been reported in some areas of the county. If you see hedgehogs in this area then contact Carmarthenshire County Council on 01267 234567 or fill in a form on the Carmarthenshire biodiversity website www.carmarthenshirebiodiversity.co.uk.
You can help keep hedgehogs safe from harm by following these simple guidelines:
Contact The Gower Bird Hospital on 01792 371630.