Shred, Save, Supply! Reusing Our Wastepaper for Hedgehogs Bedding Down for the Winter
Published 13th January 2021
Taziker’s latest initiative is to help save one of the UK’s most iconic, beloved mammals by donating and supplying shredded paper to a hedgehog rescue.
On the 30th of July 2020, the International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) classified hedgehogs as being ‘vulnerable’ on the Red List for British Mammals, indicating that they face a high risk of becoming extinct in the wild.
The reason for this, and the biggest threat hedgehogs face is exposure to humans. Agricultural and urban expansion have deprived hedgehogs of their natural habitats, with the creation of farmlands and roads removing the hedges and trees that they require for nesting, food supply and as protection from predators. Increased use of pesticides has practically eliminated their natural diet of insects.
Over the last two decades hedgehog populations have declined by 66%, plunging to a total population of only 522,000. The classification as vulnerable on the Red List should be seen as an opportunity as it brings awareness to this issue so that changes can now be made.
Shredded Paper Donations
Although Taziker are striving to become paperless, it is necessary for some documentation to be printed and due to its confidential nature it is a requirement for it to be shredded.
Preston Hedgehog Rescue Ltd are a ‘Not for Profit’ voluntary organisation who are helping to rehabilitate the local hedgehog population - taking in the smaller vulnerable individuals, bringing them back to their natural healthy state, ready to be reintroduced to the wild. Their hedgehog hospital is currently helping 150+ hogs.
Other volunteers such as the Robinson Towers Hedgehog Hotel are fostering the larger individuals to create space in the hedgehog hospital for those who require medical care and treatment. Even though these hedgehogs are larger they still have not reached the minimum weight that is needed to sustain them through hibernation during the winter months.
The effects of climate change have prolonged the summer period meaning that the number of hedgehogs which are being born later in the year has increased. There are a large number of small hedgehogs who are unable to hibernate and rely on the amazing care given by foster homes.
We have donated multiple bags of paper shredding to a hedgehog foster home and will continue to collect our Support Services office shredding to be dropped off and used by the hedgehogs at Preston Hedgehog Rescue through the winter months.
Taziker’s Sustainability Team sourced a Hedgehog Rescue Sanctuary for our shredded paper to be sent to and utilised as bedding for the hogs.
How can you help?
Preston Hedgehog Rescue Ltd have their own Facebook page which is full of advice on what to do if you find a vulnerable hog as well as ways in which to donate. They welcome donations of tinned meat dog/cat food in jelly (no fish allowed), small sized kitten biscuits, as well as old newspaper, kitchen roll, old towels & blankets, nail polish (in bright colours), small shallow dishes, and hamster/rabbit/guinea pig hutches.
Online cash donations can be made via online banking and PayPal to help with vet bills and running costs. They have their own Amazon wish list where you can purchase items on their behalf and a GoFundMe page to fundraise for larger more expensive items such as incubators.
A Hedgehog Friendly Garden
Residential gardens are becoming increasingly sparse and tidy providing no habitats or place to nest and hibernate for hedgehogs. Garden fences have removed the corridor hedgehogs move between, limiting their ability to migrate and find potential mates. We can all make small changes to our gardens to be hedgehog friendly; creating spaces for hedgehogs to tuck into for the winter. Get your family involved!
- Set up a feeding station: Create a spiral column of bricks with a small hole at the front for the hedgehog to get in. Place a small, shallow, food dish in the middle with either freshwater or meaty cat/dog food and biscuits, but NEVER milk or bread. Put a secure lid on the top to stop cats from stealing the food.
- Create a hedgehog door: Allow hedgehogs to easily access your garden by leaving a 13cm by 13cm gap (the size of a CD case) in your boundaries/fences. By asking your neighbours to also do this, we can create a larger network for hedgehogs to roam. These nocturnal animals cover around 1-2km each night.
- Wild patch: Allow a section of your garden to grow free as this will provide protection, a natural source of food and shelter for hedgehogs as well as other wildlife. Piles of logs and leaves create the best nests.
- Hedgehog home: You could even make or buy your own hedgehog home, as this offers protection during hibernation in the winter and nesting in the summer.
To find out more about this initiative, please contact the Sustainability Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.