Hedgehogs are disappearing and they need your help.

There has been a huge decline in the hedgehog population in the UK, with numbers dropping from 30 million in the 1950’s to well under a million now. Nobody knows exactly why this has happened, but reasons are likely to include loss of habitat, pesticides and slug pellets, the paving over of gardens and barriers between them.


Hogwatch Area MapWe are running ‘Our Hogwatch’ in the Penistone East, Penistone West and Dodworth electoral wards – the area of Barnsley borough west of the M1, marked on our map, although we are also interested in sightings near to the boundaries. This is an area with a huge range of habitats, from gardens to arable fields and pasture, moorland and woods.

We are running Hogwatch because don’t have much information about how many hedgehogs are in our area, or where they are. We need to know so we can take action, which might include improving habitat or reintroducing hedgehogs in suitable areas.

We also hope that doing an intensive survey in one area will help to shed light on the reasons for the national decline. We are working with national hedgehog organisations to share results. Our records will also be passed on to Barnsley Biological Records Centre.

Please tell us what you know – become a watcher and report back to us when you see a hedgehog.