Sunday, December 20, 2020

You Turn Your Lock Down On, You Turn Your Lock Down Off. On Off, On Off You Shake It All About. The 2020 Hokey Cokey

Lock down - rates go down end of lock down = rates go up
UP down, up down and repeat ad infinitum. 
This is completely expected as of course rates will go down if no one is out and about in any number and businesses are closed and of course they will go up if people then go out and about in any number and businesses reopen.

Like DUH!
The economy cannot handle this.

What needs to be done is protect the elderly and those with serious health commodities and the extremely young and let everyone else get on with life being sensible.

The rates will rise but the healthy will in all likelihood get mild symptoms.

This is flu season which is also a corona virus and we don't shut down the economy for that.

Nor did we close everything when we had SARS, MERS or any of the other corona viruses.

We have the Nightingale hospitals set up to take excess patients, those with severe symptoms should be placed in those and possibly those with severe seasonal flu, the same categories of patients thus freeing up the local hospital ICU's for all other patients.

There will be no cross contamination from covid-19 patients as they would be in effect isolation thus also freeing up beds in normal wards for recovering patients.

In the meantime vaccinations roll out to those in higher risk categories as listed above, businesses reopen again with reasonable protection such as masks, hand sanitizers etc, sensible social distancing such as an empty seat between seats and masks and once we have herd immunity, masks can be optional especially if you are at a higher risk of getting an interesting disease IE elderly, health comorbidities etc, hand sanitizer available if wanted and businesses back to normal capacity.

Hey presto!
A working and growing economy.

This is much like the Spanish Flu back in 1918.

The 1918 influenza pandemic was the most severe pandemic in recent history.
Lasting from February  1918 to April 1920

It was caused by an H1N1 virus with genes of avian origin.

Sound familiar?

Although there is not universal consensus regarding where the virus originated, it spread worldwide during 1918-1919.

Just as WW1 was around and finishing.

Not only were they busy killing each other on various battlefields, they also had to contend with the most horrendous living conditions in the trenches and the accompanying diseases they also had to contend with this new unknown disease as well.
Plus, all the surviving men who were in many cases mostly in one piece (and women who were out there nursing said soldiers) went back to their home countries and families.
In the United States, it was first identified in military personnel in spring 1918.

It is estimated that about 500 million people or one-third of the world’s population became infected with this virus. 
The number of deaths was estimated to be at least 50 million worldwide with about 675,000 occurring in the United States alone.
Mortality was high in people younger than 5 years old, 20-40 years old, and 65 years and older. 
The high mortality in healthy people, including those in the 20-40 year age group, was a unique feature of this pandemic.

 I wonder if this had anything to do with the fact that that age is prime fighting age for men, the same men returning from the First World War?
Also things weren't as good back then as they are now, poverty, slums, interesting diseases, pollution,
While the 1918 H1N1 virus has been synthesized and evaluated, the properties that made it so devastating are not well understood.
With no vaccine to protect against influenza infection and no antibiotics to treat secondary bacterial infections that can be associated with influenza infections, control efforts worldwide were limited to non-pharmaceutical interventions such as isolation, quarantine, good personal hygiene, use of disinfectants, and limitations of public gatherings, which were applied unevenly.

 Today we have better sanitation, we aren't in the middle of a long drawn out trench warfare, we have amazing antibiotics, first class hospitals and medical staff, we have ICU's with machines that back then, heck even 20 or even 10 years ago were thought almost impossible and futuristic.
We live longer than we did back then which is a big bonus but also leads to problems that were never encountered back then.
With people living well into their eighties, nineties and even centenarians, along with a longer life span there came a whole slew of new health issues the most well known sadly being Alzheimer's and other types of Dementia.
Then we have Cancers in interesting places although we do have a much better chance of survival with ground breaking treatments.
Atherosclerosis, Type 2 Diabetes, Hypertension, Stroke, Cataracts, Kidney Disease alone or in various combinations AKA Multiple Chronic Conditions.

Although we may live longer, we may not live well and in good health although there are exceptions such as The Queen who is 94 and still carrying out her public duties and looks pretty darn good for her age, not even using a walking stick and her husband Prince Phillip who will be 100 in June 2021 and who has retired from public life and who can blame him.

Almost 80% of older adults have at least one chronic disease, and approximately 77% have at least two.
Four chronic diseases—heart disease, cancer, stroke, and diabetes—cause almost two-thirds of all deaths each year and these people are the ones most at risk and needed to be protected.
Those in their teens and up to say those in their 30's and 40's are likely to be the healthiest especially those in their teens and twenties and if infected and with no known health issues will probably only suffer mild flu like symptoms, feeling rough for a couple of days.
There  will be exceptions, there always is but you can't shut the world down to prevent just one person risking getting infected.
This isn't a zombie movie where you tend to know pretty damn quick when someone has been infected, usually just as they start eating your face off.

I wonder, yes, I do wonder.
How will they work out the seasonal flu statistics such as infections and deaths?

In England, data from Public Health England (PHE) shows. 17,000 people die of the flu every year

Seasonal flu (influenza) is a major killer globally and contributes to a rise in mortality rates in the colder, winter months.

Sin the wheel, round and round.
Where it will stop?
Nobody knows.

We have already seen reports of people being listed as dying from Covid-19 (The posh name) when they have other life ending diseases such as Cancer, Kidney Disease, Stroke, Heart Disease and even simply old age and their families being rightly not happy.

Officials tell us they calculate the number of deaths by those of people who had had a positive test result for COVID-19 and died within 28 days of the first positive test.
The problem is there will be false positives, false negatives and people who recover from that but die of something else they had or didn't have but was unexpected and fatal such as stroke or heart attack or just old age.
So, even though we need to take the figures they are throwing about with abandon and used to bring about another bloody lock down with a large pinch of salt (although even that is bad for us so perhaps some lo-salt or a healthy seasoning of your choice for those with kidney failure) we need to be sensible.

People are dirty, yes, even you dear reader!
Not washing our hands after using the loo being one prime example.
No towels to dry our hands, no hand dryer, in a rush, whatever.
Coughing or sneezing without using a tissue or sleeve.
Nose picking, yes we have all seen you take a sneaky poke around or, in the case of children openly  rooting around.
Touching things, touching faces, kissing etc all spread germs.

This is why we do need to be sensible, the same as we are with the annual Flu jab.
It is now the accepted norm with those at risk and those front line staff and carers to get their jab and no one apart from a few deranged souls who complain about anything and everything complains.
They bite the bullet so to speak to protect the vulnerable, the ones most at risk of dying from the flu.

We don't shut down the economy every winter, we use common sense, this should be no different.

There are vaccines out there and now being administered.
Yes, I know they came out fast, much faster than any previous vaccinations which can take years and even decades of testing before released to the general public.
They however will have been thoroughly tested.
As with any vaccine, a few may get an unexpected reaction. this is the same for any vaccine.
Those with certain health conditions such as allergies should  and would, be advised not to have it just in case they have an adverse reaction.
This is just common sense.
Pregnant women would also be advised not to have it since they would not have tested it on pregnant women in the first place for obvious reasons.

It is these people as well as those with underlying health issues that we need to protect.

Get the vaccination if offered.
Wash your hands regularly.
Make use of hand sanitizers in stores and your own personal bottle when out and about such as public transport.
Wear a mask, after all East Asians have been doing that for years not just to protect against germs.
Be sensible regarding social distancing IE don't all squeeze into one tiny space at the same time.
If you start showing symptoms, even if you think it may just be a cold or the flu, self isolate and get a test, better safe than sorry.

The rates will rise again once this bloody lock down is over depending on where you live tier wise and even frikken country.
I do wish all the various Parliaments and Assemblies in the UK would get on the same line on the same verse in the same song in the same song book.
We do share the same bloody economy, yes, even you Scotland despite Sturgeon's best efforts and wishes.

The government is so intent on keeping the R rate (
reproduction number) below at all costs they are ignoring the destruction of businesses and the economy.
When this is all over what then?
Will there be any businesses left open on the high street or even online?

How will the economy recover if there is no one selling anything for anyone to buy and how will anyone be able to afford  anything if they don't have a job?
How will the government be able to afford the huge benefits bill if no one is paying any taxes?
 Borrowing won't work as we won't be able to afford the repayments for the previous reasons.

Everyone is blaming the Conservatives and Boris and think  this is all his fault.
It is in part and isn't in others.
Labour would have done much worse especially if Corbyn had remained at the helm, a man who refused to say where he stood publicly on Brexit (personally I think he was pro leave but because Labour as a party was pro remain he couldn't come out and say he was a leaver and so said nothing which was worse) and Keir Starmer is sort of treading water and would be unlikely to have done any better since the Labour Party is pretty much controlled by the unions whose donations are used to bankroll the party especially at elections.
The Liberal democrats would be running around in circles had they even stood even a remote chance of government having only won 11 seats managing to lose one they previously owned.
The Conservatives won a thumping majority of 80 seats their biggest since Maggie Thatcher back in 1987 and Labour facing its biggest defeat since 1935.

These are interesting times.

Three worldwide (pandemic) outbreaks of influenza occurred in the 20th century: in 1918, 1957, and 1968.
The latter 2 were in the era of modern virology and most thoroughly characterized.
All 3 have been informally identified by their presumed sites of origin as Spanish, Asian, and Hong Kong influenza, respectively.
This is just another one in a line of many, not the first nor the last as viruses change, mutate, evolve so we will always be playing catch up.

We need to be responsible for our own actions and mindful as diseases love unsanitary conditions and will thrive given the right conditions.
None of (well most of) us don't like wearing masks however, it is a minor nuisance given what could happen to us.
No the mask doesn't protect against the virus, not the ones we the public usually wear.
It is not meant to.
It is meant to stop the droplets of moisture that can carry the virus getting into our nose and mouth and to stop ours from getting to others.

The easiest way I have found to describe it this:

If a naked man pees on you, you get covered in his urine = virus carrying droplets
Now, If that man is wearing trousers and pees on you, he gets soaked and you don't = no or at least minimal
virus carrying droplets.
That is how a mask works.

There will be people who cant or won't wear a mask, that is their choice or medical necessity such as those with asthma or other breathing related issues and the other ones who refuse until they or a vulnerable loved one get infected.

It is not worth getting into a pissing match as you will lose.
Be sensible, keep your distance, wash your hands/use sanitizer for your sake and theirs as well as families.

Hopefully world governments will get their acts together and decide what works best for everyone.

They must also remember that as well as vaccinating their own populations they need to be working on populations in 3rd world countries where sanitation can be hit and miss even in up and coming countries such as India and China where once you get out of the cities and into the slums and then into the rural areas where crapping in fields is the norm.
Impoverished nations are a hotbed of diseases which could pretty much be fixed with good sanitation and vaccinations.

This pandemic also means first world nations will start looking real close at immigration legal or otherwise especially from areas known to carry high risks of disease and may well decide that quarantining before travel  with swabs, temperature checks at the airport/quayside and the same at the other end for long haul flights or those with stopovers  and  regular testing onboard cruise ships especially given we know how fast Norovirus can spread onboard.
"It won't happen to me" I hear some cry until it does, or to a loved one or friend.

Then the conspiraloons decide to jump on this shiny new bandwagon.

"It's all Bill Gates"
No it isn't.
Would Gates try and kill off the very people who want to buy his products?
Only dumb businesses try and kill off the very people they want to sell their product to.
Even the cigarette companies have finally got the message in the West along with sensible folk quitting smoking and have now gone into vaping products as well which again causes health issues such as Popcorn Lung and no matter how much they deny it, they are targeting children by selling all those 'Fun Fruity Flavors'.
Hopefully they will ban vaping as well.
Lungs are designed to inhale only clean air not smoke and particulates no matter how 'tasty'.
They don't gain anything and lose a heck of a lot

"It's all to do with them microchipping us/our children"

"Won't somebody please think of the children?"
Thanks Mrs Helen Lovejoy of Springfield.

Have you seen the size of a microchip?
It's the size of a grain of rice and if you have had a pet you will have seen one if you get it microchipped.
Have you seen the size of a vaccination needle?
It is small usually about 16mm long as it has to go into the muscle and a gauge of either 23g or 25g.
Example: 23G needle = 0.02525" or 0.6414 mm (inner diameter) - 0.01325" or 0.337 mm (outer diameter).

After all it is just injecting a liquid not taking blood.

The needle used to insert a chip into a pet cat or dog is a lot larger than any vaccination needle.

Standard pet microchips are typically 11–13 mm long (approximately ​12 inch) and 2 mm in diameter. 

Microchips are inserted through the skin with a thick, 12-gauge needle.
Example 12G needle =   0.085"  2.159mm (inner diameter) - 0.109" or 2.769mm (outer diameter)

You get the idea regarding size difference.

 You would notice them waving a rather large needle at you and/or your child and the liquid in the transparent ampoule they get the transparent liquid from containing a solid the size of a grain of rice unless you were blind.
They would then have to scan the chip using a rather large and very visible wand to get the information on it and to then enter your details on the computer and link it to said chip.
You would notice them waving said obvious wand or, in fact any wand over the injection site, unless you were blind.
If they are concerned it would monitor their locations, health etc who needs microchipping when you look at todays technology which we freely use 24/7 what with cell phones,fitbits, social media  where we post so much of our personal information.
All this detailed info which we freely offer up to the tech gods.

"It's big pharma"
Why would they kill off the people when it is in their best interests to have as many people alive as possible to who they
and with their subsidiaries can sell their huge range of products directly to prevent illness, to cure illness, vaccinations and then all the other products owned by the big pharmaceutical companies and their various subsidiaries, curing aches and pains, skin care, teething, toothache, hair care, oral care, smoking cessation products, health and wellness supplements, nutritional supplements, wound care, vision care, baby products, OTC (Over The Counter) medicines, medical devices, animal medications, fertilizers and importantly hand sanitizers, disinfectants and so on.
All things we take for granted and often don't even notice.
They are just there where we expect them to be when we need them to be.
If they kill off much of the population then they will have no one to sell to and game over.
Hey Ho bankruptcy here we come.

They need a population that isn't 100% healthy, ends up in hospitals for accidents and other reasons, births, deaths.
An ever growing population that eats food which will require healthy animals and fertilizers for crops.

They need us for them to stay in business and profitable and we need them for us to stay healthy both inside and out and for those oopsie moments.
They make money either way a healthy or sick population.

In America though I personally think their healthcare system sucks when hospitals charge obscene amounts of money for treatment such as $30 for a single Aspirin or the world renowned
story of Malcolm Bird and his 1-year-old daughter Colette.

Colette got a small cut on her finger and out of an abundance of caution Malcom and his wife brought Colette to the ER.
The ER doctor washed off her finger, placed a Band-Aid on it and sent the family on their happy way.
The hospital then billed Malcolm $629.
Now, to be fair, the Band-Aid did not cost $629, that sticky strip of sterile gauze only accounted for a whole $7.
A large majority of that bill, which Malcolm's insurance company managed to knock down to $440.30, is from the Hospital's "service fee."

In the UK we have it better as we have the National Health Service (NHS) which is free from the cradle to the grave all paid for by our taxes and covers everything medical, GPs, ER, Maternity, Geriatric, everything.
We also have a private sector for those who want to jump the waiting list or whatever other reason.
Those who use the private sector either though their own or their company's insurance, have the money or want it for something such as a birth etc.
They can still at any point go to the NHS.

The UK spent £197 billion on healthcare in 2017, equating to £2,989 per person.
For that sum each person is covered for everything medical that happened to them including vaccinations, opticians and dentists although these days prescriptions cost
£9.15 for each medicine or appliance dispensed.
You do qualify for free prescriptions if:

  • are 60 or over
  • are under 16
  • are 16 to 18 and in full-time education
  • are pregnant or have had a baby in the previous 12 months and have a valid maternity exemption certificate (MatEx)
  • have a specified medical condition and have a valid medical exemption certificate (MedEx)
  • have a continuing physical disability that prevents you going out without help from another person and have a valid medical exemption certificate (MedEx)
  • hold a valid war pension exemption certificate and the prescription is for your accepted disability
  • are an NHS inpatient.

    Or you are in receipt of certain benefits

    If you have regular prescriptions or multiple items then you can buy a prepayment certificate:

  • The 3-month PPC costs £29.65 and will save you money if you need more than 3 prescribed items in 3 months
  • The 12-month PPC costs £105.90 and will save you money if you need more than 11 prescribed items in a year

A Bargain.

There is no excuse not to have the vaccine if you can.
The government have no excuse not to make a decision, a sensible and logical decision not this Hokey Cokey shake it all about at a drunken party which seems to be the current norm.

Get the vaccine out, educate the public on basic hygiene such as masks,
sensible social distancing and hand washing and even after this pandemic is over hopefully people will continue the latter and concentrate on getting our economy growing by supporting  our smaller businesses such as those in hospitality who open and close more often than the doors in a saloon bar, independent shops who have had to furlough staff or have simply given up and closed for good and the same for the bigger businesses on the high street who have struggled not only with online shopping but now the decreased footfall of instore shoppers especially at this time of year when the shops should be bustling.
Get people travelling again and, if you insist on playing the Hokey Cokey with foreign countries and those damned 'Travel Corridors'  which can open and close on an almost daily basis, if you decide that people  traveling from that country back to the UK because of an increase in infection rates and that people will have to quarantine for up to 14 days on their return, DON'T give them a couple of days grace before the rules kick in which results in a mad rush to get  back sometimes, as they proudly declare, with mere seconds to spare before the stroke of Midnight.
Institute it immediately at the stroke of midnight no ifs no buts.
People will complain but they took the risk to travel abroad knowing that rates could rise there and the Travel Corridor could be shut and quarantine on return for however long.
I know the government trusts we would all do the right thing but sadly people can and do lie and if they start getting mild symptoms such as a rise in temperature they will take OTC medicines to try and counter it and you can't test for a loss taste or smell.
They come home possibly symptomatic even and  we end up with another localized spike or dear old granny in a box.
The sensible thing, and what I would have done, is immediately closed all borders when reports of a new highly contagious infection starting showing up and yes that even means sending all those illegal immigrants trying to cross the channel and being rescued by British ships straight back to France.
Rescued by a British ship?
Land them back in France, their point of departure.
Should they manage to land here then  rounded up by men in full protective gear and returned straight to France and then have our Navy patrolling the channel and turning everyone back.
Infections are rampant in their camps and many have come from countries with high infection rates.

There is also a new variant of Covid-19 emerging in the South East area of the UK which contains, and no surprises here, the port of Dover
There is no clear-cut evidence the new variant of coronavirus - which has been detected in south-east England - is able to transmit more easily, cause more serious symptoms or render the vaccine useless.

New Covid strain: How worried should we be?

As expected (sigh) announced today Dec 20th 2020, Our Prime Minister has announced new tiers of lockdown in
London and large parts of the east and south-east of England after a new coronavirus variant led cases to soar - and all of Wales has also gone into lockdown. In south-east England, the stringent lockdown measures mean people will not be able to mix with other households over Christmas. In the rest of England, Scotland and Wales, relaxed indoor mixing rules have been cut from five days to Christmas Day only.

The government does not want to cancel Christmas but it is "our duty" to take action when the evidence is clear, says Health Secretary Matt Hancock.

Millions of people in the UK have seen their festive plans severely restricted or scrapped after a new coronavirus variant caused cases to soar.

A stringent new lockdown has come into force in London, parts of east and south-east England and Wales.

Mr Hancock warned the new tier four rules in England could last for months.

Some 21 million people in England and Wales who entered new restrictions at midnight are being told to stay at home, while non-essential shops and businesses have to close.

The planned relaxation of rules for Christmas has been scrapped for those under England's new toughest measures - tier four, while in the rest of England, Scotland and Wales, relaxed indoor mixing rules are cut from five days to Christmas Day only.

Mr Hancock told the BBC's Andrew Marr programme that it was "important for everybody to act like they might have the virus".

Asked whether the virus was under control, Hancock said: "No it's not, the new variant is out of control and we need to bring it under control."

He added: "Of course we don't want to cancel Christmas... we don't want to take any of these measures, but it's our duty to take them when the evidence is clear."

The health secretary said he did not know how long the tier four measures would be in place but "it may be for some time, until we can get the vaccine going".

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said it was very important that people followed the new travel guidance in England and "do not attempt to travel", saying extra British Transport Police officers were being deployed.

Residents in tier four are being asked to stay at home unless for essential journeys, while people in other tiers are advised not to travel into the new tier four areas.

London Mayor Sadiq Khan told BBC Breakfast the "11th-hour announcement is a bitter blow" for families and businesses, saying it's the "chop-change, stop-start, that's led to so much anguish, despair, sadness and disappointment".

"I'm afraid it makes it really difficult for people like me to ask people to listen to us when we keep on changing our minds," he said.

However, he urged Londoners to follow the rules which he said had been brought in "for a very good reason", adding that the NHS had told him that hospitals in London had as many Covid patients this weekend as they did at the peak of the virus in April.

Tier four restrictions:

The tier four restrictions - similar to England's second national lockdown - applies to all areas in the South East which were in tier three, covering Kent, Buckinghamshire, Berkshire, Surrey (excluding Waverley), Gosport, Havant, Portsmouth, Rother and Hastings.

It also applies in London (all 32 boroughs and the City of London) and the East of England (Bedford, Central Bedford, Milton Keynes, Luton, Peterborough, Hertfordshire and Essex (excluding Colchester, Uttlesford and Tendring).

  • Residents told to stay at home, with exemptions for those who have to travel for work or education
  • Household mixing indoors is not allowed
  • All non-essential retail to close, including hairdressers, nail bars, indoor gyms and leisure facilities
  • Social mixing cut to meeting one person in an open public space
  • Communal religious worship is still allowed

The changes for England, announced at a Downing Street briefing on Saturday, will last for two weeks with the first review due on 30 December.

In Wales, First Minister Mark Drakeford brought forward a lockdown, saying hundreds of people had already contracted the new, "more aggressive" strain of the virus there.

In Scotland, Covid restrictions will only be relaxed on Christmas Day, with mainland Scotland being placed under the tightest restrictions from Boxing Day.

A ban on travel to the rest of the UK will also apply over the festive period.

In Northern Ireland, no changes have been made to Christmas restrictions, with three households allowed to meet from 23 to 27 December. The country is set to enter a six-week lockdown from 26 December.

Scientists have warned that a new variant of the coronavirus variant is more infectious and spreading more rapidly leading Mr Johnson to say the government had to "change our method of defence".

Susan Hopkins, from Public Health England, said they alerted the government on Friday that the new variant - first identified in the middle of October - was spreading faster than other viruses circulating.

Dr Hopkins told the BBC's Andrew Marr programme that there was also evidence that people with the new strain had "higher viral loads" - which meant they were more infectious.

The prime minister said analysis suggested the new variant could increase the R number - which indicates if an epidemic is growing or shrinking - by 0.4 or more.

The Dutch government announced it was banning passenger flights between the Netherlands and the UK from 05:00 GMT Sunday, until 1 January at the latest, because of the new variant.

The PM's announcement of new restrictions came just days after he defended plans to relax restrictions for five days during the festive period - despite calls by some in the medical profession to scrap the change.

Boris Johnson told the Downing Street briefing on Saturday that he knew how "disappointing" the news would be, but said he believed there was no alternative.

And so it continues, the economy goes down the toilet, small businesses go bust and do not recover, poverty levels rise and the benefits bill sky rockets. How will the government pay for all this?

Borrowing which means huge repayments and probably astronomical interest rates and clauses.
It won't just be us, many other countries will be struggling with their own problems.
What is noticeable is that most Western countries make infection and death rates public, weekly or even daily.
I have not heard anything regarding the Chinese and their rates, instead, if you will pardon the pun, deathly silence apart from the usual hacking stories.
I wonder why?
It was reported when when the story broke about a new and highly contagious disease doing the rounds that huge numbers were dying, hospitals were being inundated and struggling to cope whilst huge areas where there that were fires were detected by satellites and funeral directors were rather busy with huge numbers of cremains urns being ordered.
China with its notorious wet markets and dubious hygiene practices in said markets were alleged  to be the origin after the virus spread from animal to human.

Just what is going on in there?

I do wonder how all this will affect the voting in our next general election?

Under the terms of the Fixed-term Parliaments Act, the next general election can be expected to take place on Thursday 2 May 2024.

The Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011 provides for general elections to be held on the first Thursday in May every five years. There are two provisions that trigger an election other than at five-year intervals:
  • A motion of no confidence is passed in Her Majesty's Government by a simple majority and 14 days elapses without the House passing a confidence motion in any new Government formed
  • A motion for a general election is agreed by two thirds of the total number of seats in the Commons including vacant seats (currently 434 out of 650)

It is entirely possible that all this palaver could trigger a general election.
However, would the opposition (Labour party currently) really want to take  on the pandemic and an imploding economy?
I don't personally think so.
I think they would wait until everything is under control and what passes for normal before calling an election before the 5 years are up.
They could well win after blaming the Tories and everyone else for the fiasco that was 2020.
If everyone is in the same economic situation as in down the pan, why not simply forget 2020 happened financially and everyone start over from the last good day financially in 2019?
Just a thought.

Time will tell.
In the mean time,

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year Readers (apart from kate and gerry mccann, their conniving chums, clarrie and this blasted virus)

Keep smiling and don't let the bastards get you down.

Friday, April 17, 2020

My Hedgehog Lecture. Please Feel Free and Spread The Word

                                                                               Granny Weatherwax Taken 14 May 2018

This is the lecture I give. please feel free to spread the word and also to do your bit.

Do you believe in Hedgehogs?

In the 1950's there were approximately 30 million hedgehogs, today about 1 million or even reports of as low as 500,000.
All down to us.
We built houses and industry on their land and roads where thousands are injured or killed each year, mainly because drivers think a hedgehog will run away like other animals not realizing a hedgehog will simply curl into a ball.

Do you have a garden?
If yes then excellent what type?
Is it enclosed nothing in nothing out or is it one with hedges , a fence or walls?
If it has hedges do you have gaps where hogs can get through?
If it has fences what type, vertical or upright planks?
Excellent, let's talk about how you can contribute to your local hedgehogs?

If you have a fully enclosed one with nothing able to get in or out how about finding out where your local rescue is and offering your garden up as a  safe environment for a disabled hedgehog that cannot be released back into the wild such as a blind one.
All you will be required to do is support feed them and provide a hedgehog house for them to sleep and hibernate in and, if you are lucky maybe you will be offered one of the opposite sex and maybe you will get babies that can be released into the wild.
You can experience the joy that comes from helping an amazing creature who is also a gardener's best friend as it eats slugs and insects which could eat your prized plants.

If you have an open garden with hedges they shouldn't have too much of a problem getting in but a quick check to make sure they have room underneath to get through.
Now, if you have a fence it is slightly different.
What you could do is cut a 13cm x 13cm hole at the bottom of your fence to allow them to get in and out, you can even buy little signs saying hedgehog highway.
If you really don't want to damage your fence then you could dig a little tunnel underneath to allow them through.
You could also rope your neighbors in and have everyone opening up their gardens.
If you have never seen a hedgehog live or don't think they visit your garden, you may be surprised.
If you find little piles of black poo then you probably have a hedgehog, then congratulations!
You could even get together with your neighbors and have a thoroughfare for your local hedgehogs.
Talk to your council about making sure builders include access areas in fences to allow hedgehogs to travel.
Also ask about road signs for your street if you have hedgehogs.
Heck even bug your council regarding builders ripping up hedges when building new estates, hedges which support all sorts of wildlife.

If you do have a hedgehog or think you may you can do your bit and support feed which is what I do and over the last 2 years I have had over 50 visit.
I mark them all with different colors of nail polish and in different locations so I know who is who and as they visit I bring them in for a weigh and health check to look for signs of injury, spine loss or dry scabby skin also with spine loss which could be mange or ringworm, ticks or a heavy flea burden.
Personally I de-tick and de-flea (Johnson's small animal spray only as anything else will kill them) as required and, if it is hedgehog sexy time I check my ladies for weight gain so I can tell if they are pregnant.
Everything then goes into my diary so I can keep track of who is who and if they are pregnant, reaching hibernation weight for the late fall hoglets or losing weight and might be ill.
The joys of having worked with a wide variety of animals for 15 years before I got M.E and then more recently sciatica and fibromyalgia and 6 buggered discs in my back. Almost 2 lines on my bingo card hehe.

Support feeding is super easy.

Introducing Magrat,above, a late fall hoglet Oct. 2019

Firstly I would suggest buying a storage box from Wilko or similar, a transparent one is best so you can see if you have a visitor.
Upend it and cut a 13 x 13 cm hole in the front and cover the sharp edges with some duct tape.
Place something heavy on top such as a brick just to keep it in place rather than blowing down the street.
It is embarrassing chasing your feeding station down the street. although it will keep the neighbors amused.
Next you will need a food dish and water dish.
Personally I use a large metal shallow puppy dish for food and a large metal water dish.
I keep the water dishes (I have 2 so it saves squabbling over who drinks first) outside the station as hogs like to paddle through it/sit in it, poo in it or just knock it over often into the biscuits making them all soggy.
If it is outside, they can do all the above and it doesn't matter plus other animals can drink from it such as birds (who will also help themselves to any remaining biscuits) 
You can feed hedgehogs either meaty cat/kitten/puppy/hedgehog food or what I prefer is meaty cat/kitten or puppy biscuits which are the perfect size for hoglets, nothing fishy or a propriety hedgehog food such as Spike's  or Brambles as I have fussy hogs.
Biscuits are better as in the summer they don't go off in the heat or attract flies or any local cats and doesn't freeze in the winter.
Find what works for your hedgehogs.
You can google feeding stations if you want to make it harder for cats or other animals from eating all the food such as placing a brick to one side of the hole so hedgehogs can get round it but bigger animals can't.
I have several water dishes around my garden as well as a shallow water trough, the kind of saucer thing for the big plant troughs.
Hedgehogs can all have access to it at the same time plus birds bathe in it as well as drink from it, especially when we have really dry summers with little rain.
Make sure to give your feeding station  and water dishes a regular clean as hedgehogs can be messy eaters as well as pooing in the dish (I don't know why unless it is their version of leaving a trip advisor review) and around it and we don't want maggots.
Do not feed wild hedgehogs bread or milk as they are lactose intolerant and bread has little nutritional value.
Do not feed them dried meal worms as they are high in phosphate and can actually cause a painful bone disease in hedgehogs and, in worst case scenarios, result in them losing their ability to walk.
The high phosphate levels in theses worms are sapping hedgehogs of calcium and reducing the strength of their bones.
The hedgehog will, given the chance, eat these to the exclusion of all other foods Sunflower hearts and peanuts are very fatty, and hedgehogs enjoy them for this reason, so feed them only as a very rare treat or within a balanced diet.
Preferably not at all
Hedgehogs can often be seen foraging under bird feeders, and it's believed that it's the food that attracts them, it is more likely the insects and critters that fallen bird food attracts.

When their food dish isn't as full as they would like or I am late refilling it and I leave my back door open they invade my kitchen and chow down on the cat biscuits in my 3 cats food bowls.
These aren't even related, they all turned up at the same time.
I must be doing something right and word has gotten round about the fine dining to be had at Chateau Hobnob/Goose.
I have a 5 Prickle rating

Now, if you have a hedgehog visitor, how about providing a hedgehog house?

As well as them sleeping under sheds, logs, compost heaps and the like, a hedgehog house is always nice plus you won't be strimming it or sticking a garden fork in it unless you are a really really bad gardener.
They use it for sleeping obviously, moms use it for when they have their babies and then we have them using it to hibernate.
Hedgehogs by the way don't sleep all the way through like bears, they can and do wake up when it gets mild.
They will have a drink and a munch and then head off back to continue their snooze, this is why it is important to support feed during the winter months as well as during the rest of the year.
This is where dry biscuits come in handy in a feeding station as they don't freeze or go off quickly and keep the water dish filled.
Also birds will eat the food and have a drink as well so it is win win for your local wildlife.
You can buy hedgehog house in a variety of styles and price ranges and if you have a DIY bent or you know someone who does, build one yourself, Google will have a variety of plans on how to make your own.
Straw, Leaves and Hay are all recommended for nesting material so it is worth saving those leaves.
Place it out the wind and where it will be sheltered such as under shrubs and where it is quiet and shaded and with an  entrance hole out of the weather (ideally facing East to South)
Part fill it with some of the above to initiate a nest and see if you get occupants.
Make sure to give it a good clean in the spring once the occupant has vacated the premises even if it is between occupants.
Think of it as a hotel and providing the equivalent of fresh bedding and a room clean with you as the room maid.

Now, if you have done all the above, when it comes to gardening, everyone likes the perfect lawn and borders, usually.
Before you go charging in with your garden forks and strimmers, gadgets and gizmo's, always check whether the long grass, borders or compost heaps, especially around shrubbery is clear of hedgehogs.
Hedgehogs make messy nests and what you think is a pile of grass and leaves to be cleared away is actually some poor hogs nest.
All too often rescues are getting severely injured hogs with missing legs or head injuries caused by strimmers or puncture wounds from garden forks.
Last year, one of my ladies turned up with a lot of very short spines on her head and neck.
Someone somewhere had strimmed their garden and she had had a very lucky escape.
All too often such severely injured hogs have to be euthanized especially those with head injuries or injuries to their noses as hedgehogs use their noses to find food.
No nose will mean it will find it near impossible to find food and will starve to death.
Leave an area of long grass and leave those leaves come Fall and lets the local wildlife make use of them plus the leaves will break down and form compost which is great for your garden.
When it is Fall and Winter, your garden doesn't need to look perfect.
If you decide to have a bonfire for example bonfire night build it on the day rather than a day or days before hand as to you it s a bonfire, to a hedgehog it is home and far too many get burnt alive before they wake or can escape.
Always check first be careful though as hedgehogs blend in well.
How about using one of those metal dustbin things with the holes in, far safer for the wildlife and less damaging to your garden.
Also why not plant flowers that attract the bees and butterflies which are also rapidly disappearing?
I have a peanut feeder which I fill with raisins which I hang at the end of my garden which attracts all the wasps and keeps them away from my house, also wasps eat aphids which is good news for your flowers.

If you have a garden pond then I would advise putting in a small ladder or some stones to make it easy for anything that falls in to be able to get out again.
Although hedgehogs are good swimmers, if they cannot get out they will tire and drown and there is nothing sadder than pulling a drowned animal from your pond.
Stones are better as it also allows animals to get access to the water to drink and also for birds to have a paddle without needing water wings.
I have a shallow trough which the birds use, my cats love drinking from this trough, I think because it might taste of bird and they think they are drinking cold bird soup.

Hedgehog sexy time is usually April to September although last year (2019) because February was so mild and warm hedgehogs were getting frisky early which meant rescues were getting a lot of hoglets earlier than usual when the weather changed.
During this time the male will circle the female in an attempt to woo her.
Usually she will tell him to bugger off by huffing at him, in my garden the ladies are usually eating and I advise the males to at least wait till she has finished eating before trying to woo her.
Hedgehogs can be noisy animals huffing and puffing as well as pushing and shoving and even biting each other and violent shaking, typical males really.
Hedgehog ladies can have a 2nd litter in the Fall and sadly, often these don't survive as they can't eat enough food to safely hibernate through winter.
Hedgehogs need to be around 650g plus to survive winter.
If you find hedgehogs that are clearly smaller than that then see above about contacting your local rescue or British Hedgehog Preservation Society, again bringing them in and doing as above.
Don't leave them outside as they would be vulnerable to dogs and birds or die from cold or hunger.

A Typical hedgehog Hibernaculum

Hibernaculums are often built under bramble or scrubby vegetation to provide structural support but, as here, they can also be relatively unassuming piles of leaves. Hibernating hedgehogs are often disturbed by gardeners clearing up piles of leaves during the autumn and winter.
- Credit: Colin Brown

If you accidentally disturb a hedgehog nest, and it does happen since hedgehog nests are a tad slapdash and may look like a random pile of leaves and grass or sadly even bits of plastic which is another good reason not to liter and to recycle everything you can.
If a nest is disturbed the mother may abandon her hoglets or kill them.

Carefully cover it up again and if there are hoglets, do not touch them as the mother may simply abandon them or worse, kill them.
Keep an eye open and see if mom reappears.
She may return or may move the nest and hoglets to another site
If she does not return and the hoglets are ‘peeping’ or are venturing out of the nest, then they will be in need of rescue, in which case contact the British hedgehog Preservation society who will point you to your local rescue.

Some ladies have a second litter. although the average litter size can be four or five, often they only manage to successfully wean two or three.

If you have hedgehogs in your garden or think you do and you have a dog, even if you have the world's nicest dog, it is always best to wait until the hogs have toddled off to wherever before letting the dog out or keeping your dog on a lead in case it decides to attack the hedgehog or try to 'play' with it.
Even if you think the hedgehog hasn't been injured, it could have internal injuries or puncture wounds which if left untreated can kill a hedgehog directly or, especially in the summer, attract flies and you get fly strike which will appear as areas of tiny whitish blobs.
These will hatch into maggots which will proceed to eat the hedgehog alive.
Flies will lay their eggs in their ears, eyes, nose, mouth, genitalia and are difficult and time consuming to remove.

Now, what if  you find a hedgehog out during the day?
Then it is in trouble and needs help.
Hedgehogs don't sunbathe.

Pick it up using gloves/a tea towel/oven gloves and place it in a high sided box as hedgehogs are excellent climbers and you don't want to be playing hunt the sick hedgehog.

Offer only a shallow dish of water, no food.

 A sick dehydrated hedgehog should not be offered food, it can do more damage than good.

 Fluids are more important.

Food will only shut the body down quicker if dehydrated.

If you have a hot water bottle place it warm (not hot) underneath the hedgehog and do not allow the hot water bottle to go cold, it can have the reverse effect and do more harm than good if left to go cold.

 If you don't have a hot water bottle then a plastic drinks bottle will suffice.

Allow room for the hedgehog to move away from the hot water bottle if it wants to.

Keep in a quiet room away from noise and call your local hedgehog carer/rescue or wildlife hospital for further advice.

To find your nearest rescue; please call: The BHPS on 01584 890801.

Don't leave it outside or dump it outside a rescue who may not be there at that time or not expecting it.
Time is important and by leaving it outside or dumping it outside a rescue could result in one dead hedgehog that could have been saved.

Also don't try and treat it yourself, you can do more harm than good and hedgehog care can be hard work.
They are noisy, smelly and can poo for Britain.

Now, if you don't have a garden, firstly my commiserations but you can still do your bit for your local hedgehogs.
What you could do is offer your services as a volunteer at your local rescue.
Cleaning out, feeding, helping to apply treatments all get you up close and personal with hedgehogs and your help will be much appreciated especially if there are 40 or more hedgehogs to clean out, feed and medicate.
You could also offer your services as an 'ambulance' and collect a hedgehog from someone who has found an injured hedgehog or a juvenile in need of help.
Also taking them back to where they were found when they are ready for release which is always best as they will be familiar with the area.
You could also donate to your local rescue either money or supplies.
Many rescues have a wish list on Amazon  telling you what they need and would like as some items they get through a lot of such as puppy pads, gloves, food etc and every little bit helps.
Also donations of money are an excellent idea as the rescue could buy a new incubator or whatever else they need which can be expensive
You could also go to council planning meetings where they are looking at building new homes and demand the builders make provision for hedgehogs by making gardens hedgehog friendly such as gaps in walls or fences.
Also bring up when council workers are cutting the grass and ask the council to get the workers to check first before strimming/mowing or  ask if they can leave certain areas to grow Au naturel which will be beneficial for animals and insects.
Also ask about hedgehog signs for roads where there are hedgehogs saying things like "Slow Hedgehogs" so drivers are aware.
If they won't or can't, ask about being allowed to make your own for your road.
If you are receiving help from your local council concerning garden services where council workers cut your grass, make sure they are aware you have hedgehogs and to be careful when cutting your grass and perhaps even have a sign or signs in your garden such as beware hedgehogs.

Easiest of all?

Spread the gospel according to hedgehogs to your family, friends, neighbors, colleagues and random strangers you may encounter.
In my case, pretty much anyone I talk to, visitors, taxi drivers, strangers, shop staff, my telephone bank and when I was in hospital after nearly dying of sepsis (my kidney function dropped to 6%) the consultants, nurses, doctors, cleaners, other patients in my ward when I was moved from ICU.
I was also talking about hedgehogs in my sleep according to the 5 ladies in my ward and the night staff.

So endeth my lecture.

Please feel free to use this lecture.
You can either take out the personal bits about what I do etc or you can leave them in and say this is what my friend does/has done/has.

Have a great day honeys, Be safe, keep washing your hands and big hugs xx.

Thursday, April 2, 2020

Pick My Postcode

Pick My Postcode.
A free postcode lottery which can win you free money.
each day there are nine draws beginning at 09:00 am for the stackpot, 12:00 pm there are draws for the main draw, the video draw, the survey draw and the £5,£10 and £20 draws, at 18:00pm there is the bonus draw and at 21:00pm the second stackpot.
There are also random chances to win £5 in the flash draw.
When you sign up using your postcode, any postcode or even a made up one. All the members are given a number and this is what is drawn by computer and the postcode linked with that number is shown.|
For some postcodes there may be several members signed in using that post code and it is can be a first to claim wins the prize and for others it can be shared such as the main draw where it will show the number of possible winners.
You get 3p added per day 1p x 3 of the draws when you click on the draw to check postcodes drawn.
You can also increase your bonus by clicking on the various offers/surveys that interest you and any bonus  will be added to your account.
When you win. you win which ever prize it is that shows your post code plus your accrued balance.
The added plus is that when you win, you win whatever amount  plus your accrued balance and you also get to keep your accrued balance and continue to added to it.
An example being you have accrued £35.65 as your bonus and your postcode is drawn and you win say £10 on the stack pot.
Your winnings are then the £10 plus the £35.65 making a total of £45.65 which is then paid into your PayPal account or however you prefer often within a couple of hours.
Your accrued bonus will still stay at £35.65.
All this and it is FREE
I won last year on the bonus draw. It was £10 which had rolled over so it became £20 and my accrued bonus of just over £35 meant I won just over £55 and it was paid into my PayPal account the same day.

If you want to join up, just click on my link on the bottom, sign up which is easy and good luck

  • Over £1million has been won so far, for FREE, since it started in 2011. Here’s a video of me talking about that.
  • Like most of the internet, Pick My Postcode is funded by advertising.
  • The “catch” is that you need to check the site daily. This creates ad revenue.
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  • Type “pick my postcode” into a search engine and see for yourself
And some reliable sources:
BBC World News
BBC Radio 5Live
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We were in a question (with our old name) in a recent episode of The Chase

Win a PMP Birthday Prize #lottery #giveaway #freebies #competition

Have a great and a corona virus free day.
Big hugs all round xx

Sunday, October 27, 2019

HEDGEHOGS: Bonfire night, Juveniles, Autumn and Hibernation.

                                       It is that time of year again Folks.

Hedgehogs have declined from approximately 30 million in the 1950's to around 1 million today and are continuing to plummet in numbers due to US.

As we  are approaching November the 5th, Bonfire night, if you are going to have a private bonfire party please, please, please check your bonfire before lighting it for any wildlife such as hedgehogs who might be sleeping or hiding in it.

If possible build it on the night before you start your party as it saves having to check or perhaps if already built and not too big  simply dismantle and rebuild maybe somewhere else even.

It can take a hedgehog 4 hours to come round from the state known as torpor/hibernation.
This gives them no chance if the fire's lit and they have decided to hibernate underneath.

Alternatively please use a broom handle or something similar to lift the logs /wood and shine a torch to check for hedgehogs, remember this is not fail safe, hedgehogs blend in so well and will be hard to spot against wood especially in the dark.

It really is best to just move the pile a few feet away on the day, that way any hedgehogs found can be moved somewhere safe until the event is over or build it just before you light it.

Better yet attend your local bonfire display, bigger and better fireworks, other entertainment as well is usually on as well plus a nice warm bonfire.

If you don't check before lighting your bonfire then you could be burning an animal alive or leaving them with horrific injuries which they may or may not survive such as below.
With such injuries many have to be euthanized, others may need to be re-homed in an enclosed garden because their spines may not grow back or be patchy leaving them vulnerable or they may not be able to curl up properly again due to scar tissue making them vulnerable to attack from predators such as foxes or attacks from dogs.

                                             A survivor of a bonfire which was lit without it first being checked for hedgehogs.
Sadly, This lady died, likely from the heat leaving 3 hoglets orphaned.

In fact always check before lighting any bonfire, to you it is a bonfire, to a hedgehog it is a home, sometimes its final home as they are burned alive.

Also, if you see a hedgehog out during the day it will be in trouble and need help as they are nocturnal animals and sleep during the day.


PLEASE, do act if you see a hedgehog out during the day.
A hedgehog out in the daytime is in trouble and needs urgent help.

Pick the hedgehog up, with gloves if you have them or a blanket/towel or tea towel, place the hedgehog in a high-sided box (it must be high-sided as they are excellent climbers), cover the hedgehog over with the tea-towel or blanket and take it inside.

o NOT leave it outside or outside your local rescue without notifying them.
Time can be crucial for sick or injured hedgehogs

Offer only a shallow dish of water, no food.

 A sick dehydrated hedgehog should not be offered food, it can do more damage than good.

 Fluids are more important.

Food will only shut the body down quicker if dehydrated.

If you have a hot water bottle place it warm (not hot) underneath the hedgehog and do not allow the hot water bottle to go cold, it can have the reverse effect and do more harm than good if left to go cold.

 If you don't have a hot water bottle then a plastic drinks bottle will suffice.

Allow room for the hedgehog to move away from the hot water bottle if it wants to.

Keep in a quiet room away from noise and call your local hedgehog carer/rescue or wildlife hospital for further advice.

To find your nearest rescue; please call: The BHPS on 01584 890801.

Also at this time of year some of the ladies are having a second litter so be careful when doing your garden such as digging or strimming as you may disturb a nest or worse kill or injure a hedgehog and/or her babies.

In fact at any time you are working in your garden such as digging or strimming, 


Hedgehog nests are messy and may not look like a nest at all sometimes just looking like a pile of leaves, twigs, grass and sadly may even contain bits of plastic so no littering, recycle everything you can and cut up anything that can encircle a neck or body of a hoglet or adult, tie a knot in plastic pack/bags such as crisp wrappers so a hungry animal cannot get stuck in it.

Breeding season for the British hedgehog is usually April to September although this year 2019, as it was so mild and warm in February we had hedgehog sexy time occurring earlier than usual with hedgehog rescues getting some super early hoglets needing help.
Courtship is noisy, the male will circle the female and she will tell him to pretty much bugger off.
males will compete so there will be the equivalent of my bits are bigger than your bits and lots of pushing and shoving with occasional biting and shaking.
In my garden the males will do their circling whilst the lady is eating and she will tell him "bugger off, I am eating" which never appears to stop them persisting with their wooing.
I had one lady (Tiggy) so fed up she backed her back end against the side of my greenhouse.
The lovelorn male (Junior) couldn't circle her as he normally would ended up going along the side of the greenhouse, through the missing pane in the back, through the greenhouse, out the front door and back round to his beloved.
She still told him to bugger off but eventually she did produce babies so his use of single brain cell must have worked its studly wiles on her.
I always advise my boys to wait until the lady has finished eating and they may then be more receptive to their manly charms.

They never listen.

This was the scene that confronted me when I was checking my garden and I saw a strange shadow at the end of my garden.

Armed with torch and camera I discovered two of my hogs in flagrante delecto.
Meet Junior and Tiggy who did successfully manage to complete the act at a later date resulting in two babies, Edmund and Edwina.
She however wasn't enthralled by his efforts and carried on walking along the fence with him hanging on for dear life.
It looked promising until she walked under my garden gate and he didn't and fell off, just at exactly the wrong moment as was helpfully pointed out by a friend of mine when I posted pictures on my FB.
He did however persist with his wooing and I ended up with babies

If you accidentally disturb a nest

If a nest is disturbed the mother may abandon her hoglets or kill them.

Carefully cover it up again and if there are hoglets, do not touch them as the mother may simply abandon them or worse, kill them.
Keep an eye open and see if mom reappears.
She may return or may move the nest and hoglets to another site
If she does not return and the hoglets are ‘peeping’ or are venturing out of the nest, then they will be in need of rescue.
Some ladies have a second litter. although the average litter size can be four or five, often they only manage to successfully wean two or three.
Late fall hoglets often do not survive as they simply don't have the time to build their reserves that allow them to hibernate successfully.
To hibernate successfully it is recommended the hedgehog weighs at least 650g, anything smaller may not survive depending on how harsh winter is.
It is also another good reason to provide food and water as hedgehogs may not hibernate until November or December if the weather is mild plus, they do not sleep all the way through like bears and if it is mild they will wake have a drink and food before going back to bed.

If you come across hoglets that look to be too small to hibernate, you can weigh them and if substantially below 650g contact your local rescue who will take them in and over winter them.
This is not something you should attempt do yourself at home as hedgehogs can be noisy and smelly and they will poo a lot, and I mean a lot.
They will likely have a worm burden and require treatment or even things like mange or ringworm, ticks, fleas or mites all of which need treatment or removal.

A Hedgehog Nest

Hibernaculums are often built under bramble or scrubby vegetation to provide structural support but, as here, they can also be relatively unassuming piles of leaves. Hibernating hedgehogs are often disturbed by gardeners clearing up piles of leaves during the autumn and winter. - Credit: Colin Brown.
If you are lucky to have such a gorgeous visitor as a hedgehog and you have a dog or dogs, when you let them outside to do their business at night and your dog(s) will or may attack a hedgehog or 'play' with it, it might be a good idea to check first to see if you have guests and if so wait a few till they leave or keep your dog on a leash to prevent it going for the hedgehog even if your dog is friendly and you don't think it will attack your hedgehog or decide to play with it thinking perhaps it is a ball or just being nosy.

Such injuries may not appear serious but are as they are puncture wounds and in the summer such injuries can be a target for fly strike with the maggots  appearing quickly and then proceeding to eat the hedgehog alive.
If caught early enough the hedgehog can be treated, the eggs and maggots removed and antibiotics etc applied.

Hedgehog Feeding Station and Support Feeding

If you do have visitors and want to do your bit to encourage them you can build a simple feeding station.
You can buy a cheap storage box (Wilko is good plus as they are transparent you can see if you have visitors)
Turn it upside down and cut a 13cm x 13 cm hole in the front and cover sharp edges with some duct tape. and place a brick or something heavy on the top to keep it from being blown away.
A couple of dishes, I use a large flat puppy dish as I support feed a lot and a dish for fresh water is great and feeding them either meaty cat meat (no fish) or meaty cat biscuits or kitten biscuits which are the perfect size for hedgehog and hoglet mouths.
I also prefer biscuits as they don't go off regardless of the temperature unlike meat in summer and doesn't attract anywhere as many flies or cats.
Currently mine are on Spike's Biscuits which they love.
Spikes also do a semi moist biscuit.
There are other brands such as Brambles who also do a meat, find what works for your hedgehog visitors.
Mine are fussy so it is Spike's or whatever my cats are eating which is currently Iams chicken kitten biscuits.
In the summer it is worth putting out extra water bowls, this years I had one long shallow trough and 5 large water bowls for cats, hedgehogs and birds, everyone stays cool, refreshed and happy although I think my cats prefer drinking from the shallow trough as the birds bathe in it.
I think my cats think it was some sort of cold, bird flavored soup.
Hedgehogs are opportunistic feeders and will eat pretty much anything they can get their little claws on

Do not feed wild hedgehogs bread or milk as they are lactose intolerant and bread has little nutritional value.Do not feed them dried meal worms as they are high in phosphate and can actually cause a painful bone disease in hedgehogs and, in worst case scenarios, result in them losing their ability to walk. The high phosphate levels in theses worms are sapping hedgehogs of calcium and reducing the strength of their bones.
The hedgehog will, given the chance, eat these to the exclusion of all other foods but as the rare occasional treat they are OK if given just a couple.
Sunflower hearts and peanuts are very fatty, and hedgehogs enjoy them for this reason, so feed them only as a treat or within a balanced diet.
Hedgehogs can often be seen foraging under bird feeders, and it's believed that it's the food that attracts them, it is more likely the insects and critters that fallen bird food attracts.

Sticking to hedgehog biscuits,meaty cat or puppy biscuits or meaty cat or dog canned food and clean fresh water is the best option and your hedgehog visitors will have a nice healthy diet.

If you do have visitors then it is also worth considering  providing a hedgehog house both for general sleeping, mothers nesting and/or hibernating.
They are reasonably priced and come in a variety of shapes and sizes or you can build your own if you have a DIY bent.
Straw, Leaves and Hay are all recommended for nesting material so it is worth saving those leaves.
Place it out the wind and where it will be sheltered such as under shrubs and where it is quiet and shaded and with an 
entrance hole out of the weather (ideally facing East to South)
Part fill it with some of the above to initiate a nest and see if you get occupants.
Make sure to give it a good clean in the spring once the occupant has vacated the premises.

Build your own Hedgehog house

Hedgehog Rescues
It would also be nice if, you find out where your local hedgehog rescue is if you could perhaps donate food, supplies such as puppy pads, newspaper, latex gloves etc.
Many rescues have wish lists on Amazon where you can decide what you would like to donate, every little bit helps as running a rescue is expensive with not only food and other supplies but also vet bills for things like medication and even surgery.
If you have some spare time perhaps even volunteer a couple of hours to help out with cleaning and feeding and you can get up close and personal with these wonderful animals, each with their own personalities.
Perhaps even, if you drive, offering your services to go and collect a sick or very young hoglet that may have been abandoned by its mother for whatever reason or the nest has been disturbed.
Also if you have a fully enclosed garden where nothing can get in or out, it is worth offering your garden to your local rescue as a safe garden where a hedgehog that cannot be released back into the wild for what ever reason, such as blindness can live.
provide a hog house and support feed and your disabled hedgehog can live a safe happy life bimbling around your garden.
Who knows, perhaps if another disabled hedgehog of the opposite sex shows up maybe offer that one a home as well and you could end up with babies which can then be released into the wild.
You could even foster and be the halfway house between one from your local rescue to being released back into the wild.
It allows them to get acclimatized to the weather and being able to find their own food  from your support feeding before being fully released back into the wild.
It lets the rescue know the hedgehog can cope and is fit and healthy enough for the big wide world and being released back to the area where it was initially found.

Every little thing will help make a difference to these rapidly decreasing number of animals, less than a million left in the country having fallen victim to vehicles (drivers think they will run out the way when the hedgehog simply curls up into a ball and promptly gets squished or seriously injured) so drive carefully and keep an eye open for hogs in the road, perhaps if you can do so safely, stop and remove the hedgehog from the road and place on the side on the grass or whatever, building new estates both residential and industrial destroying their habitat or blocking their thoroughfares through gardens with walls and fencing down to the ground, in which case why not make a space in your fence for hedgehogs to go through (13cm x 13cm is optimal), a hedgehog tunnel or if you don't want to damage your fence, make space underneath the fence deep enough for them to get through.
You can even get little signs for them saying hedgehog highways and templates on amazon or Ebay
Why not get together with neighbors and everyone make a space in their fence to allow our nocturnal visitors through?
If they are building new housing estates go to the meetings and demand they make provision for hedgehogs with spaces in fences and walls to allow them to travel through gardens and in safety.
See if they can put up SLOW Hedgehog signs if you have hedgehogs in your street or allow you to put your own signs up.
Also if you have a pond, make sure that if an animal falls in, it can get out again so things like a small ladder or some stones making it shallow enough for them to get out even though hedgehogs are excellent swimmers and climbers, If they can't climb out of a deep pond they will tire and drown and yet another needless hedgehog death.

Hedgehogs are a gardeners best friend as they eat slugs and bugs so be honored when you are graced with their presence and who knows, you may even end up with babies.
Below in the the link can be heard the various sounds hedgehogs can make so even if you can't see a hedgehog, you may hear them around.

Various noises a hedgehog can make

Hermione, one of my regular visitors as a baby weighing about 300g  or so. She was tiny and fit comfortably into the palm of my hand
She does not like sharing and when she is eating regardless of how large the food dish is, she will shout at then and get so cross she will go backwards and if that doesn't work, she will take a run up and try and shove them away which confuses some of my big boars who come in at well over a kilo and wonder what is going on.

Once again, you can find out more if you visit the British Hedgehog Preservation society at the

Below are a couple of pictures of just a few of my wild hedgehog visitors also showing the type of dish I use and why

Dinner time at Chateau de Hobs, First sitting

When my backdoor is open and I wasn't fast enough refilling their food dish for dinner.
I do wish however they would learn to wipe their feet first before entering.

Again I was slow serving dinner so Tiggy (back) Hermione (middle) and Junior decide to help themselves to my then 2 cat's dinner.

Some useful sites

Hedgehog Street

British Hedgehog Preservation Society
St Tiggywinkles

Ark Wildlife Shop

And for those of you with pets, I highly recommend this site for all your pet needs.
Economical with a huge variety of products at all pricing levels, something for everyone.
In particular if you have a cat, and I have 3, I strongly recommend Grey Master ultra clumping cat litter.
It is economical price wise plus all you need to do is scoop out the solid clumps for disposal rather than having to throw the whole trayful away as it stinks and is pretty much one solid lump of yuck.
Less litter is thrown away each time you need to clean your cats litter tray so it lasts longer
Also cats find it feels nicer to their paws.

Zooplus Pet Supplies

Have a great day everyone, thank you and big hugs from me, my 3 cats
Wingnut Cubert Picklebutt.
Clancy falahdoodledoodah McHooligan.
PoppyDoppy FrankenKitty
All my hedgehog visitors.