Wildlife experts from the Burnham-On-Sea area have been caring for this tiny hedgehog who was found in a carrier bag where he’d crawled in to get some rest.

The hedgehog, named Smoky, was found underweight at Weston-super-Mare Fire Station and has been treated by the carers at Secret World Wildlife Rescue in East Huntspill.

The charity says hedgehogs born late in the year struggle to put on enough weight to hibernate successfully so he needed the extra care.

Trudi Howell, animal carer, explains: “Our objective is always to rehabilitate and release the animals in our care but before he could be released back into the wild, Smoky went into hibernation and so he has remained at Secret World until now.”

“Smoky now weighs enough to be released and is getting ready to return home. I have visited the fire station and I have located a suitable release site within the grounds.”

Firefighters at Weston-super-Mare Fire Station are looking forward to their prickly visitor’s return.

“We are very happy to welcome Smoky back on the station grounds. It’s nice to hear he is back to full health and we’ll be keeping an eye out for him when he is back,” says Lee Wright, site manager at the fire station.

Smoky should be back home just in time for Hedgehog Awareness Week which runs from 30 April to 6 May 2017. Organised by the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (BHPS), the week highlights the problems hedgehogs face and how you can help them.