There was less hedgehogs in gardens than there were last year, according to a survey
There were also fewer birds, ladybirds and butterflies seen in the nation’s backyards last year compared to 2015.
The survey of 2,600 people for BBC Gardeners’ World Magazine’s annual wildlife survey found that half did not see a single hedgehog last year.
The most recent survey in 2015 said there were fewer than one million left. Only 12 per cent saw a hedgehog regularly, highlighting the scale of the decline.
This is despite 60 per cent of those questioned having tried to help hedgehogs by not using slug pellets, keeping leafy areas for them and checking before lighting bonfires.
Research claimed there were fewer than one million hedgehogs left in Britain
Fay Vass, of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, said that in the Fifties the best estimate was that there were 30 million hedgehogs across the country.
Between 2000 and 2015 hedgehogs declined by 50 per cent in urban and 33 per cent in rural areas.
Only 12 percent of survey participants claimed they saw a hedgehog in their garden regularly
Ms Vass said: “We’re sorry to hear that so few people in the survey have seen a hedgehog but it is not surprising given that they have been in decline for quite a few years now. The main reasons are the loss and fragmentation of habitat.”
The BBC survey found that overall sightings of sparrows were down three per cent to 78 per cent and starlings were down fi ve per cent to 49 per cent.
Ladybirds were also declining with a five percent decrease from 2016
Also declining were ladybirds, down five per cent in the last year at 84 per cent, peacock butterflies were down four per cent to 40 per cent and small tortoiseshell butterfies fell six per cent to 29 per cent.
Meanwhile a record number of ancient woodlands are under threat from development, the Woodland Trust said yesterday. There are 709 woods threatened by development ranging from housing to quarries and infrastructure.
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