By Lilla Tolhurst, Youth & Play Worker
It’s spring and down at The Ranch we’re seeing more of the wildlife from Badock’s Wood that we’re so blessed to share our magnificent site with – foxes, badgers, rabbits, squirrels, birds, and, of course, hedgehogs! We’re now getting ready to welcome our spiky little friends back from hibernation.
Last year, the fabulous Forest School gave The Ranch its first hedgehog house so the children could provide a home for Southmead’s prickly little residents. To make it cosy and inviting the children added newspaper and leaves inside for the hedgehogs to snuggle up into, and painted the outside of the house with the name ‘Mr & Mrs Hedgehogs House’ in camouflage colours so it would fit nicely within the scenery, under the trees, behind the bushes, down by the stream, at the back of our site where hedgehogs frequently cross. Hedgehogs hibernate from November to March and so we’re not only getting prepared to meet our prickly mates again but also cleaning up their original house and adding two new ones.
A hedgehog’s house isn’t just for Christmas, while it provides a safe place for them to snuggle up and snooze during their winter hibernation it’s also somewhere for them to sleep during the day when they’re up and about again. We can’t wait to see them!
As well as a huge thanks to the Forest School we want to say a massive thanks to June Stevens for donating our two new little houses – thanks June, from all at The Ranch.