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The University of Liverpool has been awarded bronze accreditation to be a Hedgehog Friendly Campus.
Since joining the Hedgehog Friendly Campus scheme in August 2019, Zoë Chapman, Business Manager at Ness Botanic Gardens and Clare Casey of the Sustainability team have built a project group from a diverse range of departments and teams across the University of Liverpool. The project group have worked together to undertake a number of initiatives including fundraising bake sales, tracking surveys, public events and awareness raising. The team have also been instrumental in the rescue of four poorly hedgehogs, all of which were taken to a local wildlife rescue for care and treatment.
A National Scheme
The Hedgehog Friendly Campus scheme aims to raise awareness of the plight of hedgehog, while taking practical steps to improve habitats and circumstances for hedgehogs across university campuses. The Hedgehog Friendly Campus project is funded by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society and runs nationally.
Since 2000, the number of hedgehogs in rural areas has plummeted by as much as 50% and in urban gardens by 30%. There are perhaps just a million hedgehogs left, representing a 97% fall from the 30 million estimated to have roamed the UK in the 1950s.
This decline has been in part attributed to the fragmentation of hedgehog’s favourite habitat with the loss of hedgerows and familiar countryside habitats, leading hedgehogs to move into more urban environments where litter, busy roads and impermeable garden fencing and walls, significantly impact on their survival.
The next two meetings will focus on planning for the silver award and will take place in Liverpool on the 30th of January and the 4th of February at Leahurst. If you would like to attend, please do get in touch.
Zoë Chapman, Business Manager at Ness Botanic Gardens said “By gaining our bronze accreditation we have made a solid start on raising awareness of hedgehogs and making our environment more supportive of the needs of these gentle mammals. We are looking forward to continuing this work in 2020, and hopefully, achieving silver accreditation in due course.”
To get involved or to find out more, please contact the University of Liverpool’s Hedgehog Champion, Zoë Chapman by emailing ZChapman@liverpool.ac.uk or by calling extension 56328.
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