Hogs on Roads 2020
Last year we asked you to help record hedgehog sightings and ran an appeal to raise money to fund research into hedgehog road deaths. Thanks to your help, we have now identified hotspots where hedgehogs are most at risk on roads. Click here to view our interactive map, which is free for communities and local authorities to use.
However, the work doesn’t stop there…
Thousands of hedgehogs die annually on Britain’s roads. The last estimate, made in 2016, put the figure at between 167,000 and 335,000 animals. With the current estimated number of live hedgehogs in Britain believed to be around 500,000, it doesn’t take a maths genius to work out that the situation is dire.
Does slowing down for hedgehogs make a difference?
We want to continue to track the progress of hedgehogs and carry out vitally needed research into the best method of preventing road deaths. In particular we want to find out if introducing speed limits in high risk areas might be a way of reducing hedgehog mortality on roads.
We need your help
Currently the Mammal Society receives no government funding for its core activities and relies on contributions via donations, legacies and memberships to continue. Any contribution you can make to our Hogs on Roads 2020 appeal will allow us to continue this important work to help conserve what is one of Britain’s most iconic mammal species.
Please click on the button below and donate today. Thank you!
Are we Driving Hedgehogs to Extinction?
Sadly, hedgehog populations are now so low that we rarely see them, even squashed ones on the side of the road. However, we know that vehicles are still one of the main threats to hedgehog conservation.
Together with People’s Trust for Endangered Species and British Hedgehog Preservation Society we are undertaking a national study of hedgehog roadkills with the aim of building a true picture of the impact cars have on our already dwindling hedgehog population.
The study, in a nutshell
A large body of data on hedgehog roadkill has been collected over the last seven years. We are currently analysing this data, with a view to gaining a better understanding of:
- habitat features associated with hedgehog roadkill;
- road features which might impact roadkill numbers;
- periods in the year when roadkill is likely to more prevalent;
- environmental factors which may have an influence.
Help our Hedgehogs Appeal
Hedgehogs are one of our most appealing and best loved mammals but are currently experiencing a long term decline. Part of the reason for this decline is loss of habitat. Hedgehogs are now increasingly taking refuge in sub-urban habitats including gardens, where they are often welcomed and fed by members of the public, and where they also often come into contact with artificial light. Artificial light is known to have major ecological impacts, disrupting the behaviour of a range of vertebrate and invertebrate species, so it is important to understand how lighting may be affecting Britain’s favourite mammal. The Mammal Society are conducting the Hedgehog and Lighting Project investigating the effects of artificial lighting on the feeding habits of hedgehogs, using camera traps to film hedgehog visits to feeding stations.
Save the Water Vole
Every year, many miles of habitat occupied by water voles is cleared by strimming. The idea is that water voles will move out of areas designated for development, and create new burrow systems elsewhere.
From mid-August 2016, the Mammal Society worked alongside WildCRU at the University of Oxford to assess the threat posed to water vole populations by strimming, and attempt to identify workable solutions. The results of this work will be acted on by Statutory Nature Conservation Organisations.
To find out more about the project, please visit the WildCRU website here.
Our Water Vole Mitigation Handbook provides guidance on the recent changes in licensing requirements for water vole mitigation and is now available from NHBS here.