SLIDESHOW: Hedgehogs need help surviving this winter

An animal charity has seen a spike in the number of hedgehogs coming into its care.

But while volunteers at Animals In Need will do all they can to look after the prickly creatures, they are in need of donations to help fatten the animals up so they can survive the winter months.

One of the 50 hedgehogs at Animals In Need

One of the 50 hedgehogs at Animals In Need

The charity in Little Irchester is looking after more than 50 hedgehogs, many of which are smaller than the 500gm needed to survive hibernation.

Amid fears that more hedgehogs will be handed in to the charity in the coming weeks, the animal charity is appealing for donations of food to fatten up the small animals.

Standard cat and dog food is fine for the hedgehogs, although it needs to be rabbit or chicken in jelly.

Donations of old towels and newspapers would also be welcome to help keep them warm during the winter months.

Annie Marriott from the charity said: “With hedgehog numbers rapidly declining it’s so important we do all we can to help these little prickly gardeners’ friends.”

The charity usually has about 30 hedgehogs over the winter, so the numbers this year have already seen an increase.

However, the figures are not as high as they were about five years ago when they had 80 hedgehogs to look after.

For more information call Animals In Need on 01933 278080 or visit www.animals-in-need.org.