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The University of Reading Hedgehog Society

A hedgehog sticking its head out of a square holeHedgehogs remain one of the UK’s favourite mammals and they need our help. There have been steep declines in the number of hedgehogs in rural areas, and whilst this trend has also been evident in urban areas there are positive signs that hedgehog populations in these environments are stabilising. This makes the actions of people, home owners, community groups and societies even more vital to ensure that this trend continues and to see the populations grow once more.

What are we doing here at the University of Reading

The University of Reading hedgehog society has existed for a number of years but it has flourished over the last year under the leadership of two committed zoology undergraduates Raman Nijjar and Nilo Mason. They were inspired to act after a lecture by Dr Phil Baker who highlighted the plight of our spiky friends.  The society is supported by a dedicated small group of staff who are have been assisting the society to further their plans and developing relationships with key departments such as Grounds Maintenance.

The society has grown in strength and had a very successful year delivering a range of different events and projects. Last Spring the society undertook hedgehog population surveys using footprint tunnels to help understand where populations are located on Whiteknights. In August 2023 we worked in collaboration with the Grounds Maintenance team and Reading Students Union to survey the hay meadows behind the Union for hedgehog day nests before it was mown. The society has also: undertaken a full hazard audit of Whiteknights looking for potential areas for improvement to remove obvious wildlife hazards, lots of craft and activity sessions, various litter picks to help clean up areas, hosted a climate café and wildlife walks in collaboration with other local environmental groups.

Fox and hedgehog on Whiteknights campus, University of ReadingHow you can get involved

There are lots of ways people can get more involved. Please fill out this form and let us know what you are interested in:

  • We’re looking for more staff members to join the committee.
  • We need interested students to fill some of the committee roles, so if any members of staff know anyone suitable, please do pass on the information.
  • This Spring we want to set up a network of University staff and student supporters who could be called upon in the event that an injured animal is found on campus. The supporter would use their car to transport the animal safely so they can get the treatment they need.

Further information about the society can be found by following the society on Instagram.

 

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