Hedgehog in the undergrowth

Easter Bonfires can be a deadly fate for wild animals

FOUR PAWS advises: Only pile up firing piles shortly before lighting


An Easter bonfire has been a long religious tradition in many countries – but please do not forget about safety regulations and protective measures for landscape and wildlife. For many animals, such as hedgehogs, mice, toads, snakes and insects, deciduous mounds or heaps from the garden pruning are an ideal shelter and protection.

FOUR PAWS advises:

Only pile up firing piles shortly before lighting, or shift them again just before. In this way, small animals that have found shelter can flee and do not have to suffocate or burn in agony.

Unfortunately, many Easter fire operators do not comply with the request to rearrange the piles, probably for convenience. Therefore, please speak to the operator in good time and, if necessary, offer your help with switching. Especially now that the majority of wild animals start rearing their young and are looking for hiding places to protect, the likelihood of saving animals is very high.

This hedgehog was lucky:

This little guy was injured in an Easter bonfire. The hedgehog was taken straight to the OWL AND BIRDS OF PREY STATION Haringsee, where a specialised team took care of him - he was very lucky to have been saved, but the burns from a fire are clearly visible and will impact him for life.

A hedgehog burnt by an Easter bonfire

For your own garden we recommend to avoid burning leaves and pruning – instead you should use this for composting.


How to Protect Wild Animals

See more of our wildlife guides


Share now!