Diarmuid Gavin: Our native wildlife need helping hand - here are simple things you can do
Acouple of weeks ago, I was disturbed by the sound of the dog barking in the garden. That's not unusual... it's her territory and whether it's a bird in the tree, a deer in the field over the fence or a neighbour at the door, she lets us know! However, this was different, with a slight manic tone inhabiting the bark so I couldn't ignore it. Wandering out, I discovered Roxie, our huge teddy bear of a Goldendoodle, peering into the pond, which remains drained since the summer drought. Stuck in the centre and unable to escape was a terrified hedgehog. Worried that the little thing would die of fright, I shooed the dog away, wrapped a towel around the extended ball of bristles and placed the hedgehog in the shrubbery. This little animal is of real benefit to all who love nature, wildlife and gardens. He and his mates must be protected at all costs and, as gardeners, we have a role to play.