Animal rescue charity calls for ban on Aldi hedgehog houses

An animal rescue charity has called on Aldi to halt the sale of a product due to hit stores this week as they claim it could injure or kill hedgehogs.

Hedgepigs and Hoglets Rescue posted a picture of the Gardenline Igloo Hedgehog House from the Aldi’s specialbuys section and said they should be banned.

A post on Facebook said: ‘This product is going on sale on Thursday 8th October in Aldi stores. These igloo houses have been the cause of injury & quite probably deaths for Hedgehogs, consequently, we are calling for their ban.

‘Hedgehog rescues report that Hedgehogs spines get caught up in the inside where they become stuck and literally starve to death or at least suffer construction injuries. They are poorly made and blow over in the wind. They should be removed from the market.

‘If you want to make a good solid hedgehog house which doesn’t put your local Hedgehog population at risk visit the Gardeners World website or the BHPS. Thank you.’

A further post added: ‘They are all prone to blowing away and all made if basket, some have mesh on the inside which are riskier as you can imagine, they are just a waste of money and are another risk to Hedgehogs.’

The description on the Aldi website says the igloo, which costs £9.99, is ‘big enough for a family of hedgehog’.

It adds: ‘This Gardenline Igloo Hedgehog House features a small entrance tunnel to deter predators from your spikey friends. In a natural brushwood with waterproof membrane, do your part to help natural wildlife with this cute hedgehog house.’

But the charity said they have seen cases of the animals getting caught in the material, and with gardeners not wanting to disturb them in the wild, they can die inside.

Similar types are widely available and the charity said that all igloo style houses are ‘a poor design’ as they don’t have a proper tunnel and could be risky.

An Aldi spokesperson said: ‘Over a quarter of a million of these hedgehog houses have been sold over many years by various retailers and charities including the RSPB and The Woodland Trust.

‘It has been tested extensively and our supplier hasn’t had any reported safety issues.

‘We are talking to Hedgepigs and Hoglets Rescue to share this information and allay their concerns.’

Gardeners World recommends using an old wooden box for a hedgehog house, filling it with dry leaves, hay or straw and covering it with leaves or logs to make it look natural.

You need to include a pipe for ventilation and attach a tunnel to the entrance.

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