The Big Teignbridge Hedgehog Survey is about to go live! We need households across the area to take on a week’s survey. This will involve placing a tunnel in a fairly secure (from human tampering) space and load with cat/dog food each evening and check and replace the track paper.
The first step is to complete a short registration form with your contact details and your water hedgehog monitoring experience, including letting us know whether you would like to attend a training day prior to your survey.
Once you have registered and received your confirmation of reservation of your survey square, no one else will be able to reserve that square.
The second part of the survey will be to place your tunnel, visit your site daily and complete the record forms, and then submit your records either by email or post.
How does it work?
Hedgehogs leave very distinct footprints and these can be used to determine whether they are present at a site.
Footprint tunnels are simple, plastic triangular tunnels with a removable insert to which A4 paper is attached and ink painted on either side of a dish of bait (see below).
As a hedgehog moves through the tunnel, it leaves footprints on the paper which can easily be identified.
We will arrange for surveys to be concentrated in one area at any one time to assess presence or absence from that area.
What do I need to get involved?
Tunnels will be provided and collected from a local collection point, with tracking materials, survey forms and guidance (but you will need to provide cat/dog food – this will be around 3 pouches for the duration of the week).
Is it safe?
This type of survey does not disturb the hedgehog’s routine as tunnels can be set, checked and refilled at any time of the day, so it won’t disturb your night time routine, either and you don’t have to rummage around in the dark!
Once the tunnels are positioned, it shouldn’t take more than half an hour to check and refill them… this gets quicker over the week as you get used to it.