Covid-19 and Hedgehog Rescues During Self Isolation / Social Distancing Advise
THIS ADVICE IS ONLY FOR THE NEED TO HELP STOP THE SPREAD OF CORONAVIRUS FROM PERSON TO PERSON!!!
It is trying times for us and hedgehog rescues due to the country being told to isolate and maintain social distancing. We have had a spike in rescue calls and help with hedgehogs as lots of people have taken to the garden.
As we have also now changed our procedures to be safe out there during rescues it is more important than ever to try and determine which hedgehogs need a rescue and which ones are fine to go about their day/night.
The most common calls we have had lately are ones of a hedgehog bring found in a garden during the day by being disturbed from clearing of leaves, garden clearance, and under sheds or under decking. It is a difficult time due to hedgehogs hibernating and being disturbed while in hibernation even though most should now be out of hibernation. Relocating a hedgehog that is simply sleeping in a nest and one that is hibernating poses different risks to the hedgehogs.
If a hedgehog that is healthy has been disturbed during these risky times for potential spreading of the coronavirus from person to person, we advise it can be moved to a safer place in your garden.
It is difficult for many people to know when they have found a healthy hedgehog or one that is dehydrated and emaciated. But, a general rule of thumb would be the shape of the hedgehog. One that is round and plump is likely fine so long has no other issues. One that is elongated or oval shaped when curled up might be dehydrated or emaciated. You can also call The British Hedgehog Preservation Society if you are unsure about the health of the hedgehog you have disturbed while gardening.
What to do:
Carefully moving the hedgehog with gloves on your hands. It is very important to also move all the nesting material and ensure the hedgehogs new nest is protected from the weather. Place the hedgehog the same way you found it in its nest. Ensure lots of insulation is covering the hedgehog and ideally place a cardboard box over the next with a 13xcm x 13cm hole cut in to one side. Ensure the new nest is out of the way, ideally under bushes in your garden. Water and any jelly based food can be left for the hedgehog which they will appreciate.