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3rd Jul, 2022

Wildlife trust want Solihull volunteers for hedgehog 'torchlight safaris'

WILDLIFE enthusiasts are being called on to help with some prickly business.

Warwickshire Wildlife Trust (WWT) is looking for volunteers in Solihull and Rugby to join its ‘nocturnal torchlight safaris’ to help monitor the struggling hedgehog population.

Volunteers will meet at ‘hedgehog hub’ sites in Solihull and Rugby to look for the critters to check their health and mark them to keep track of them.

Hedgehog officer Deborah Wright, who runs the torchlight safaris, said: “The torchlight safaris are a brilliant way of seeing animals that people usually miss during the night.

“We walk set transects across sites, searching for hedgehogs by listening carefully and scanning the vegetation with powerful torches. When we find hedgehogs, we map them, check their health, sex and weigh them, and mark them with numbered tubes to help us keep track of them in the future.

“Torchlight safaris are exciting because you never know what you will find!”

The hedgehog population has declined by 30 per cent in urban areas and by half in rural areas since the millennium.

WWT runs a county-wide campaign to raise awareness of the decline and inspire people to take action to help save their prickly neighbours.

Participants must be available to survey all night during multiple events in May and September and able to walk long distances.

All training and equipment will be provided.

Those interested in taking part can email deborah.wright@wkwt.org.uk by March 31.

People are being called on to help save the declining hedgehog population. Picture by Deborah Wright.

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