Project title: Hedgehogs in Greater London: Viability of fragmented populations in urban environments
Summary: The western European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus) is undergoing severe declines across the UK and central Europe. Urban environments are becoming an increasingly important habitat for the species, yet severe habitat loss and fragmentation within urban landscapes pose significant challenges for the long-term survival of wildlife populations; reducing population size, connectivity, and genetic diversity, and increasing the risk of inbreeding.
Understanding the impact of fragmented urban environments on hedgehog populations will be vital for effective conservation management but has been comparatively little studied. This project aims to address this gap, combining ecological and genetic approaches to identify how the urban landscape shapes hedgehog distribution, genetic structure, and connectivity across greater London. This will provide valuable insights to inform the future management of this charismatic species in urban environments.