A home for hedgehogs
We’re making changes to our green spaces to encourage hedgehogs onto campus.
Since Surrey joined the Hedgehog Friendly Campus scheme in 2019, a dedicated project group has worked together on initiatives like tracking surveys and awareness raising. The group is led by Dr Tara Pirie, Lecturer in Ecology and Conservation.
The Hedgehog Friendly Campus initiative was created in response to the alarming decline in hedgehog numbers. They're a species that are easily recognised and cherished in the UK, but they're now listed as vulnerable to extinction because of things like habitat loss, building developments and garden hazards.Dr Tara Pirie, Lecturer in Ecology and Conservation
These are some big challenges to tackle, but universities like ours, have an abundance of space that could potentially support hedgehogs and other wildlife. And some changes, such as undertaking regular litter picks or being more vigilant are quite simple. The scheme provides the roadmap to these changes, through a hedgehog-friendly action list, that we are now working through.
Going for gold
The Hedgehog Friendly Campus scheme, which is funded by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, has awarded us silver status and now we're going for gold!
We're making our campuses more inviting for hedgehogs and other wildlife by:
- Allowing brambles to grow
- Placing out hedgehog houses and providing log piles for them to nest in.
- Leaving areas of long grass and hedgerows to allow wildlife to move around campus safely.
Are there hedgehogs on campus?
The team have placed tunnels around the University so they can identify if there are hedgehogs on campus and what adjustments can be made to help them thrive.
If you’ve seen a hedgehog on campus let us know by completing a short online survey. The information you share will help us understand where hedgehogs are on campus, and identify any potential barriers that might be stopping them from making our campus their home.
Our hedgehog campaign is in partnership with the charity Wildlife Aid.
If you'd like to find out how to make your green spaces more wildlife friendly or need advice about wildlife in need, please visit their website.