Saturday, 29 March 2014

RSPB launches a new nutritious treat to feed your garden hedgehogs


Hungry, Hungry Hedgehogs!
RSPB launches a new nutritious treat to feed your garden hedgehogs
Morwenna Griffiths, speaking for the RSPB in the South West said, "As temperatures gradually rise, and nature begins to unfurl, our garden friends the hedgehogs also stir from their spiky-ball hibernation.  Sadly, it’s estimated that UK hedgehogs have declined by a third in the last ten years so it's vital that we do our little bit to give them a home in our own gardens this year.
“To help supplement the hedgehogs’ natural diet the RSPB has launched a new food specifically designed to meet their nutritional needs.  Cranberry Crunch is made from top quality ingredients, including: premium suet pellets; sunflower hearts; peanut nibs; dried mealworms; and dried cranberries.

Cranberry Crunch is available at RSPB retail outlets such as the RSPB Shop at Darts Farm, Devon and our shop in Bath (it's available online too).  This food provides a healthier alternative to the old wives’ tale of bread and milk - which must always be avoided as it causes the hedgehogs stomach upset.  Small amounts of cake, biscuits and pastry as well as fresh and dried fruits and cooked vegetables can also be used as a tempting hedgehog treat.
“Many modern gardens have less “wild” space than they used to due to decking and paving, so Mr and Mrs Tiggywinkle now struggle to find natural shelter in hedges and leaf piles.  Planting a garden hedge helps enormously – the clue is in the hogs’ name – hedges are not only homes for ‘hedge’ hogs, but also provide habitat for nesting birds and a host of insects and small mammals.

“You can also help these prickly critters by setting up a permanent hedgehog shelter in your garden which are available from a range of outlets including the RSPB.

“Don’t forget having a hedgehog move-in can be a great advantage to any keen gardener, as they just love to munch their way through all of your pesky slugs and snails.”

The RSPB warns against using chemicals in the garden as slug pellets can be particularly detrimental.  Use non-toxic brands when putting preservative on garden sheds, fences and other wood furniture around the garden as hedgehogs often lick new smells and surfaces.

For more information visit:


For further information and to arrange an interview, please contact:
Tony Whitehead, RSPB Press Officer, 01392 453754, 07872 414365

Images to support this story are available from RSPB Images.

To access an image, please click on the hyperlink below and then enter the user name and password when prompted.

User Name: hedgehogsw
Password: hedgehog1


Tips to Help Protect Hedgehogs
·         Hedgehogs habitually hide themselves in piles of leaves, grass cuttings, pampas grass, compost heaps and bags of rubbish.  Always check these before burning, cutting, strimming, mowing, putting a fork into or disposing of them.

·         Many plastic items can trap, ensnare or cut a hedgehog.  These include netting, plastic can holders, large necked bottles, plastic pots and barbed wire.

·         Hedgehogs can also easily fall down holes, into water troughs, ponds, swimming pools and other types of water vessel.  If you cannot prevent them from falling in, then make sure there is always a way for them to get out.

·         Dogs can injure hedgehogs, so make sure you know what your dog is doing when in the garden late at night.

·         If you accidentally disturb an active hedgehog nest, carefully replace the material.  The hedgehog will soon repair or move the nest elsewhere.  If there are young in the nest, avoid touching them.  Similarly, if it is a hibernating adult, avoid waking it.  Should it wake, you may want to leave it some food nearby.

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