5/11/2009

Final countdown for Mrs Tiggywinkle?



Following comments left by my last post I suddenly realized that this is the first year that I have not seen a hedgehog. Our suburban garden has always played host to generations of these quiet and dignified little creatures and could often be seen shuffling about at nighttime eating up slugs and other garden pests. Many of you say the same so I decided to see what I could find out about their numbers. According to this article hedgehogs will have died out completely by 2025!!!!

More research is needed into the causes of their dramatic decline and concerned individuals are being asked to take part in surveys in order to shed more light on the situation. If you feel that you would like to help you can record your sightings of hedgehogs here- You can also find more information about these creatures here at the The British Hedgehog Preservation Society

As with the bumblebee please feel free to use this image on your own blog to link to any of these conservation sites. There are so many creatures in need of help it is easy to feel overwhelmed, yesterday I saw two bumblebees, which appeared to be dying, crawling around unable to fly. What kind of a world are we leaving to our grandchildren I wonder?

15 comments:

  1. How very sad. Is this decline more in certain areas than others? I wonder if it is linked with the use of slug-pellets etc, and proliferation of block-paving instead of gardens?

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  2. Yesterday we travelled into Nottinghamshire to visit family and on our way into Edwinstowe we saw one at the side of the road - very dead I'm afraid. I was saying that it was the first hedgehog I'd seen, dead or alive, for ages - we've never had many in our garden here but now there seem to be none at all - what a shame! I'm off to read all your links now - thanks for this, Valerie:)

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  3. Dear Raph, I am sure they are partly to blame and I have to confess that we have block paved our drive and have used slug pellets in a hanging basket. (So now feel very guilty!) Also I heard that modern fencing does not allow movement from one garden to the next.

    Rosie, it seems that although it is sad to see dead hedgehogs it is a good sign in a way because it shows that they are still around, (according to the survey).

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  4. How sad! I've heard so much about colony collapse disorder with the bees (and just painted a "Blessed Bee" piece) - but was completely unaware of the hedgehog situation. Although they're not native here in the U.S., I believe some people keep them as pets.

    As for what kind of world we're leaving, I fear a much poorer one if these creatures are gone.

    ~ Carolee

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  5. So sad to hear.
    I noticed last year that the hedgehogs had disappeared. We have lived here 11 years and have always had hedgehogs in the garden and have never used slug pellets. We never needed to as they kept the slugs under control. But last year that was it, they've gone and we haven't seen them since. :(

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  6. You actually have had wild hedgehogs in your garden? Ah, how delightful. We've had possums, and the occasonal skunk, along with some destructive coons--but never a hedgehog.

    I'm sorry to hear your little friend has not been in evidence.

    And what a wonderful tribute to this little animal...your artwork is beautiful. It delights my heart no end.

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  7. What kind of world indeed.
    Such sad, and disturbing, news.

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  8. Dearest Valerie, I just wanted to write and tell you what a joy your watercolors are. Because you and Patricia are always sending each other blog updates and because I frequently see these postings from you I see your delightful images and am always blown away by your touch and line quality and the overall presence of these paintings... so thank you for letting us share in these works. James

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  9. Thank you for bringing this to our attention! so, so sad, when i was younger it was a common sight indeed. What is happening to our precious world, the future is a scary place!

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  10. You may be interested in this wonderful and fascinating post about hedgehogs

    http://ceanothus.blogspot.com/2009/02/prickly-friends.html

    It is by a blogger in Croatia who rescued two hedgehogs and nursed them back to health. It has loads of information and photos . . .

    Lucy

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  11. Your hedgehog illustration is gorgeous. So much lovely detail.

    I have heard about the terrible problems with bees but had no idea that hedgehogs were also in difficulty. We had a couple in our garden this spring and normally have two or three throughout the summer. I often see them run over on the local roads though. Their decline is very disturbing. It is like the cuckoo. I live in the countryside and we used to hear them every late spring but I haven't heard one for at least 6 years.

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  12. After reading your post,and feeling very sympathetic as hedgehogs are a huge favourite in our house, I thought I'd share a little glimmer of hope from down here in new Zealand. We have two resident hedgehogs in our garden. We call them 'fatty mummy' and 'little one'! They have been here for several years (well I hope they're the same pair!) and my lovely friend down the road in the local village (were in the country) has quite a few which stop by at night to eat the cat's biscuits by the front door! I hope you to find some prickly visitors in your garden. xoxo

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  13. I wish we had hedgehogs over here. (I love the illustration). How sad to have them disappear.

    We do have a colony of bumblebees that live in my backyard which I try to encourage. Honeybee sightings are rare anymore though. (why honeybees and not wasps???? There are more than enough of those around!)

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  14. We used to have a hedgehog in our garden and we have not seen any this year, I thought it was because we now have a dog.
    Your illustration is wonderful Valerie.x

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  15. I am just catching up on your posts.
    my son found 3 babies in his garden that were too young to realise they needed to hibernate, last winter. he tried to rescue them, sadly only one survived. I haven't seen or heard any this year :o(
    Thanyou for the hedgehog links
    x
    Sumea

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