Call for '˜hedgehog highways' in all new housing developments

A petition is calling on the Government to make '˜hedgehog highways' compulsory in all new housing developments.

Tuesday, 9th October 2018, 3:53 pm
Updated Tuesday, 9th October 2018, 3:54 pm
In danger - the humble hedgehog.

More than 300,000 people have signed the petition at change.org.

It asks that new fences have hedgehog holes built into them.

The 13cm square gaps help hedgehogs move the considerable distances they can travel each night. More than a mile is not uncommon.

Hugh Warwick from the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS) started the petition.

He said: “We know that hedgehog numbers are declining and we know that one of the biggest problems they face is the way we chop our land up into smaller pieces.

“This often happens when new fences are put in place - and as we are facing a house building boom there are going to be hundreds of thousands of new barriers to hedgehog movement.”

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The hedgehog is suffering from a dramatic population decline.

The latest State of Britain’s Hedgehogs report from the Hedgehog Street Campaign shows how in the last 18 years urban hedgehog numbers are down by 30 per cent and rural hedgehogs, 50 per cent.

Hugh added: “With wildlife sensitive planting, ponds, and bat and swift bricks, new housing estates can offer homes for hedgehogs and other wildlife as well as for people.”

Fay Vass, chief executive of BHPS, said: “This petition is aimed at making new build sites better for hedgehogs, but improvements can also easily be made in existing homes too! Hedgehog Street is a project we run with People’s Trust for Endangered Species and its website offers a wealth of information and advice for homeowners wanting to help our prickly friends, you can even sign up to be a Hedgehog Champion!”