Robot Lawnmower Threat to Hedgehogs – Wildlife Mutilated by Automatic Gardening Tools
Anyone who knows hedgehogs will know that when they feel threatened, they often curl up and spread their spines. As Brits embrace robot lawnmower technology, these animals are increasingly in danger, and we’re hearing more and more heart-wrenching reports that they’re being mutilated and killed by these devices.
Hedgehogs in the UK are at risk from habitat loss and food scarcity, and they’re already commonly injured when gardeners use strimmers on tall grass, but robot lawnmowers are a new threat. They cut grass by moving around gardens on their own and are gaining popularity in Britain. Newer models can be very quiet, meaning that wildlife doesn’t notice them until it’s too late to get out of the way. Hedgehogs, who instinctively curl up, often don’t stand a chance against the robots’ sharp blades.
Gardening with manual tools and keeping an eye out for animals is the best way to avoid killing hedgehogs, but to reduce the chance of mutilating wild animals when using robot lawnmowers, gardeners need to opt for louder models that give animals a chance to flee to safety, check their gardens thoroughly for wildlife before running the devices, and use them only during the day – when animals are less likely to be crossing their lawns.
Should you find a hedgehog who has been mutilated by a lawnmower, contact the RSPCA immediately on 0300 1234 999, and a representative will direct you to the nearest veterinary surgery. Euthanasia by a vet is usually the most compassionate option for hedgehogs injured by lawnmower blades, but the British Hedgehog Preservation Society also offers help and advice on dealing with sick, injured, or orphaned hedgehogs and maintains a list of rehabilitators in the UK.