Foraging for food – animal rights activists warn: robotic lawnmowers pose a deadly threat to hedgehogs

Bonn (dpa) – The German Animal Welfare Association warns of the dangers of robotic lawn mowers for hedgehogs. The animals that were looking for food after hibernation often fell victim to the automatically running devices, explained the organization in Bonn.

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The problem: instead of fleeing, hedgehogs curl up in danger – with fatal consequences. “The robots do the hedgehogs gruesome: The sharp blades cut snouts or feet, even completely separate spines, layers of skin or limbs,” said Animal Welfare Association expert Katrin Pichl. Most of the mutilated animals will probably not be discovered at all. “The hedgehogs drag themselves into the thicket, where they die unnoticed and excruciatingly from the consequences of injuries such as infections or fly maggot infestations.”

The Animal Welfare Association therefore – if you really want to use a robot in the garden – to thoroughly search the grass before mowing. In addition, for the sake of the hedgehogs, the devices should only be sent on their journey under supervision and around lunchtime – hedgehogs are nocturnal, they only start paddling in the evening hours and look for insects or worms.