Animal charity tells people to “remember hedgehogs” and check for lodgers on Bonfire Night

By Alexander Hodgkins-Jones

The British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS) has warned that homemade bonfires look like five-star hotels to hedgehogs, advising people to check carefully for lodgers before lighting.

With a new national lockdown beginning in England on the same day as Guy Fawkes Night and big displays cancelled, a huge number of garden bonfires are expected at residential addresses.

Hedgehogs bed down in unlit bonfire piles and sadly perish when ignited.

Hedgehog numbers have dwindled in recent years

The People’s Trust for Endangered Species in 2018 found that hedgehog numbers have fallen by half in rural areas in the last 20 years.

Bonfire risks expose the spiky critters to further decline.

BHPS advises bonfire builders to check carefully under the pile by lifting it with something non-sharp, like a broom, and looking thoroughly with a torch for sleepy dwellers.

If you do find a hedgehog then carefully remove it to a safe place and return it to its habitat the following day after dousing the area with water.

More information about hedgehog preservation can be found on the BHPS website.

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