Animal rescue centre to start hedgehog microchipping programme
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An Aberdeenshire animal rescue centre is to microchip all the hedgehogs it releases back into the wild this year in a bid to help save the mammal from extinction.
They have recently been declared as red listed meaning they are extremely vulnerable and in threat of becoming extinct.
The New Arc, which is based near Ellon, is to start a microchipping programme to help maximise the survival chances of the hedgehogs.
In an online statement the centre said: "Hedgehogs have recently been declared a 'Red Listed’ mammal in the UK, meaning they are extremely vulnerable and in threat of possible extinction.
"With this in mind The New Arc has decided to become more proactive. This year we will begin a programme of microchipping all the hedgehogs we release.
"This long-term project will help us determine the health, longevity, distribution and success of the work we do, hopefully providing valuable information which will assist in maximising the hedgehogs survival chances.
"Each year the number of hedgehogs arriving at the centre has seen a steady increase. Last year we received 118 hedgehogs and we're pleased to say that over 82 per cent survived.
"Thirty-one overwintered with us and are now ready to be returned to their home areas as soon as the weather decides to be sensible.
"Excluding the cost of chipping, vet treatment, on-going medication, housing, bedding and heating it costs The New Arc approximately £150 for each hedgehog we overwinter."