This month we have Carole Catchpole from Northumbrian Hedgehog Rescue joining us to talk about her work. Carole, from Longframlington in Northumberland, has been caring for hedgehogs now since 1998 with good release success and a great deal of support from her local vets, Aln Northumbria.

As The Journal reported a few months ago:

Although she has volunteers who give her much-needed help, some days she has to care for the animals all by herself.

Getting up at 5am Carole can work solidly for 10 hours a day just to clean them out, and keep them fed and watered.

The hedgehog carer needs to keep the larder well stocked as the guests get through 14 tins of cat food a day and 100kg of dry food a month, and 10kg of meal worms. As well as the quantity the fussy hedgehogs are also sticklers on quality too.

Carole said: “Some hedgehogs can be very funny – you wouldn’t believe it. I have some that only eat dry food, and some that only eat moist.

“There are some that only eat meal worms, which are very expensive, but I buy in bulk.

“There are some we can only tempt with fairy cakes. It’s like humans, if you don’t want to eat, a bit of sweetness encourages you.”