In most European countries, hedgehogs are believed to be a hard-working no-nonsense animal. This partially results from the folk belief that hedgehogs collect apples and mushrooms and carry them to their secret storage. It is unclear exactly how old this belief is, though the Roman author Pliny the Elder mentions hedgehogs gathering grapes by
Hedgehogs have been on the planet for over 15 million years and are said to be one of the oldest mammals. Hedgehogs are named after their "pig-like” habit of rooting through the undergrowth for food. They are quite noisy and can be heard snuffling and grunting during their activities.
Grace was found with a neck wound. She was treated for fly strike (myiasis) and her deep cut cleaned. Some of the fly eggs were found inside her mouth. Fly eggs can hatch into maggots just eight hours after being laid and start feeding on their host. In nature, this process is essential to remove dead and decaying wildlife from the environment, but on a live animal it is usually fatal. Nature is harsh but effective.
Grace recovered with the usual fight we see from hoglets. They are strong and stoic and fight against most adversities.
At the rescue we have treated hedgehogs for over 30 years and during that time the reason for admission has changed dramatically. Hedgehogs are extremely susceptible to lungworm due to its increase in their environment. Gardens have become fortresses, keeping hedgehogs restricted and preventing their roaming and finding food, nesting sites and mates, so that small populations can become isolated and more vulnerable to local extinction.
Take the challenge and read these amazing things we have observed about Grace and her friends
• Grace relies on her sense of hearing and smell when foraging for food at night. #AmazingGrace
• There are 16 species of hedgehog. #AmazingGrace
• When hedgehogs mate they often make loud snuffling noises. #AmazingGrace
• As Grace rummages in the hedge for food she grunts and snuffles like a pig, hence the name hedgehog! #AmazingGrace
We are helping Grace the Hedgehog and her friends as they are in very serious trouble. Grace is one of our rescued hedgehogs and she needs a safe home to be released in. The areas in which we can safely release Grace are dwindling and over the last 30 years we have seen a massive decline in a safe, sustainable environment for Grace and her friends.
Hedgehogs have survived for over 15 million years and are thought to be one of the oldest mammals on earth. They are not found in America or Australia but are found to be widespread. They have changed very little in their time on the planet. Hedgehogs all have hollow hairs that are made from the protein keratin that human hair and fingernails are made from.
On Tuesday 26th April 2016, Dr Brian May and Anne Brummer launched a joint campaign to save Britain's hedgehogs in Portcullis House, London. The campaign is called #AmazingGrace in honour of Grace a rescue hedgehog that came into Harper Asprey Wildlife Rescue last autumn, underweight and suffering from 'fly-strike' in a deep wound to her neck.
Grace and her much-loved ‘spiky friends’ face numerous hazards throughout their lives, out in the country and in urban areas. Many of the problems they face are created by Man. LET’S HELP GRACE! Take a look at the factors that contribute to her decline and see how you can help. Here is Grace’s view of some of the main threats: