Helping Hedgehogs

 Hedgehog in a pile of leaves (c)Paul Hobson Hedgehog in a pile of leaves (c)Paul Hobson

Hedgehogs need your help! They are disappearing from our gardens, towns and countryside. We want you to help us to map hedgehogs across our region, and become a citizen scientist to save our spiky pals!

We're asking you to be a Hedgehog Hero and help us to map the location of hedgehogs across Sheffield, so together we can take the  appropriate conservation action to save the Nation’s favourite species.

Sheffield’s hedgehogs face an uncertain future

There are fewer than one million hedgehogs left in the UK

Once a common sight in our gardens, this spiny species is now declining rapidly across the UK. An estimated 30% of the population has disappeared over the last decade and there are now thought to be fewer than one million left.

The reasons for the declines are still not known for certain, but it is likely that habitat loss and development – particularly the loss of hedgerows, habitat fragmentation and the intensification of agriculture – is to blame. Roads, garden pest control – including slug pellets – and the increasing use of impenetrable garden fencing particularly affects our urban hedgehogs.


Urban Hedgehog Image credit Tom MarshallMonitoring hedgehogs is difficult and we cannot know for sure how many hedgehogs are left in Sheffield, let alone the UK. In order to help address our lack of knowledge, our Nature Counts team is asking you record local hedgehog sightings in order to better understand the population.

Nature Counts was supported by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The records we collect through this survey will help develop effective conservation efforts to save Britain’s favourite species, and will be sent to both Sheffield Biodiversity Records Centre (which feeds into the National Biodiversity Network) and to the Hedgehog Street team to help fill knowledge gaps.

It will take time to build the numbers back up but creating a call to action now could help change the hedgehog’s fate before it’s too late. Once you have submitted your own records, please spread the word and encourage others to do the same!

Seen a hedgehog in or around Sheffield? We want to know about it!

Let us know what you saw and when and where you saw it. We also want to know about any hedgehog signs you spot, and even sightings of dead hedgehogs. They all help to build up a picture of what's happening to our hedgehogs.

View our hedgehog map to take a look at the hedgehogs near you. Don’t forget to add your sighting!

You're on candid camera!


We thought we'd whet your appetite for hedgehog spotting with this clip of one of our prickly friends. Click here to view.



Haven’t seen a hedgehog?

If you haven’t seen hedgehogs in your garden but would like to attract them, you can download our hedgehog booklet to find out how to garden for wildlife and help hedgehogs thrive.

We’re also encouraging people to link their gardens to allow hedgehogs free movement across the city to find food and mates. Hedgehog Street has some top tips on how to link your garden and encourage hedgehogs. You can even add your hedgehog hole to their hedgehog hole street map.

 (c)Richard Bowler

For more information on long-term monitoring projects, further ways to help and for more information on their current status, visit:
Hedgehog Street
British Hedgehog Preservation Society
People’s Trust for Endangered Species

Found a hedgehog in need of help?

If you see a sick or injured hedgehog, or one that is out during the daytime, it is in need of urgent help. For advice on what to do, see the following websites:
British hedgehog Preservation Society | 01584 890801
South Yorkshire animal Rescue | 0114 234 9656
Barnsley Animal Rescue Charity | 01226 744888
RSPCA (wildlife advice) | 0300 1234555
RSPCA Sheffield branch | 0114 2898050