This is a bit of a local entry – in that it will be of most interest to people who are not too far away from Oxford … but will also be of interest to people passionate about hedgehogs. 

Whenever I give talks I always say how much fun is to be had from getting really close to wild hedgehogs – how much of an insight into the animal can come from simply observing them in their natural habitat. And I also say, if you ever see a note from someone looking for volunteers to help them with some research – grab the opportunity in both hands and don’t let go …. 

And now there is a fantastic opportunity for people who are keen to commit themselves to some hard work – and in return get a chance to help us understand more about the reasons why hedgehog numbers in the UK are plummeting. 

The amazing WildCRU of Oxford University has recently taken on a researcher to help us answer these questions – in fact I was so tempted to apply to do the research myself, but as I am on the steering group that set the project up there was a clash of interests. The money for the project has come from the PTES and the BHPS.

Now that researcher has put out a call for volunteers

In fact I can save you the bother of following that link – all you need to know is here:

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Dedicated volunteers are required from late March for a hedgehog study. This will form part of an exciting new study to look at hedgehog behaviour in relation to habitat in the rural landscape. Volunteers will have the unique opportunity to observe first-hand a variety of techniques being used including footprint tunnels, radio-tracking and macro-invertebrate surveys. Successful candidates will be required to assist in tracking hedgehogs at night at study sites in the Oxford area. Additionally there will be some day time work quantifying habitat at the study sites and surveying for macro-invertebrates.

The ideal candidates will be enthusiastic, robust, energetic and committed. They will be able to carry out fieldwork as part of a small team, through the night and early morning, outdoors and in all weather conditions. They will preferably be located, or be able to locate themselves in the Oxford area as accommodation, unfortunately, cannot be provided. Applicants must be available for a minimum of three specific weeks or longer from late March to October and preferably hold a driving licence.

Please email CV including two references to carly.easby@zoo.ox.ac.uk.

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This is a wonderful opportunity … please spread the word … and you might even meet me out there – it is hard to resist the opportunity to get back out with my hedgehogs!

 

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