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Why hedgehogs are disappearing as fast as wild tigers

Natural protective prickles offer no defence against intensive farming. Lost habitat means hedgehogs are disappearing as fast as wild tigers.

Steve Ayton has turned his garden in Woking into a hedgehog haven. What some may see as messy they see as home.

The images below from Steve's night cameras offer charities like the Surrey Wildlife Trust a glimmer of hope that hogs can flourish in people's gardens. But, to form a plan, they need more data.

What we're doing is asking people across Surrey to get in contact with us and let us know if you've seen a hedgehog it can be in your garden or even if you've seen a dead one we still want to know where they are and that means we then know where we have hedgehogs and we can start to focus on these areas and work with communities to get their gardens hedgehog friendly.

– ALEX LEARMONT, Surrey Wildlife Trust

Of course not everyone's gardens are equipped with night vision cameras but there are other tricks to see what's crawling around your garden at night.

Steve Ayton with his hedgehog tunnel

A hedgehog tunnel - the idea is the hedgehog walks in eats some food, walks across the ink pad and then releases a trail of prints across the paper and that's a pretty fool proof means of knowing if you've got a hedgehog or not.

– STEVE AYTON, Hedgehog enthusiast
When left out for a couple of nights this is what you can see - tiny paw prints from one of natures great wanderers

A hedgehog will typically travel a kilometer a night a small hole in a garden fence typically the size of a CD will enable them to go from one garden to another and then is all the gardens are linked they have that sort of distance they can travel.

– STEVE AYTON, Hedgehog enthusiast

If you don't fancy cutting a hole a gap underneath will work too. Small changes can make a big difference.