The safety of hedgehogs and other small animals is important to us. We have set ourselves the goal that our robotic mowers can be operated without accidents, emissions and noise. To ensure that we meet this requirement, we work closely with scientists in the development of our products. By following a few simple tips, you can help protect small animals.
The animals that live in your garden have their own needs, which may differ from yours as a gardener — but keeping everyone happy is not as difficult as you may think. Here's how to make sure hedgehogs and other wildlife feel at home in your garden without having to sacrifice regularly mowing your lawn:
How hedgehogs feel at home in your garden
Hedgehogs are welcome visitors to our gardens, because they keep them free of slugs, caterpillars and co. From the right shelter to the right protection of ponds and pools: As part of our initiative, we have compiled helpful tips together with Dr Sophie Lund Rasmussen on how you can make your garden wildlife-friendly.
- During the low-nutrient period in autumn, you can set up water and food (cat food is a good option for hedgehogs). Pay attention to good hygiene around the feeding station.
- Build nests for hedgehogs by creating a wild corner in your garden with garden litter, piles of leaves or tree trunks.
- Build a hedgehog freeway using tunnels or paths between gardens off-road.
- Provide biodiversity in your own garden in order to provide hedgehogs with natural sources of food (e.g. wild flower seeds, insect hotels).
- Safe ponds and pools by providing an easy way out. Cover deep holes and drains as well.
Don't use pesticides and chemicals in plant care.
- Make sure that nets are stored securely and that there is no litter that could harm the animals.
- Be careful when you try to light a fire and move the pile to a different location the day you burn it.
- Be sure to carefully inspect all areas in the garden before gardening. The same goes for your compost heap before you start working in it with the digging fork.
- When using a robotic lawnmower, make sure to use it during the day. A recent Oxford study on the potential impact of robotic mowers on hedgehogs identified three key technical safety features: pivoting blades, skid plates and the front wheel drive. All of these features are present in various combinations in the robotic mower models from Husqvarna Group and its brands.
Measure 1: Technical requirements of the SILENO Robot Mower
Measure 2: It all starts with the design
Whether you use a traditional lawnmower or a robotic lawnmower, a shorter lawn means fewer safe spaces for hedgehogs, bees and butterflies. However, just because you have a robotic lawnmower, it doesn't necessarily mean you can't have a wildlife-friendly garden. With the right garden design, it's easy to create shelters for insects, hedgehogs and other animals: Try including hedges, shrubs and sections of wild flowers. The summer blooms in these wild areas are not just lovely to look at — the pollen and nectar attracts a whole host of insects that will help pollenate your garden, so you'll also have a great fruit harvest!
To separate these areas from your lawn, simply lay the wire for the robotic lawnmower in the desired location and sow a mix of wild-flower seeds in the area where you want them to grow. If you have the room for some larger wild areas, how about installing some beehives?
Here at GARDENA, we've enlisted the help of a local beekeeper and now keep honey bees at our headquarters — and there's no shortage of robotic lawnmowers in use there! We've reserved part of the garden to use as a wild flower meadow, and every year we produce around 600 kilos of the finest honey for our employees to enjoy.
As well as wild flowers, bees and butterflies are also drawn to herb gardens and ornamental gardens when they are in bloom. Their favourites include:
Measure 3: Mow during the day