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Vet students win grant to safeguard hedgehogs
The project builds on previous measures to develop the Easter Bush site into a hedgehog-friendly haven.
Funding to protect wildlife at University of Edinburgh's Easter Bush campus
Veterinary students at the University of Edinburgh have won a £2,000 Student Experience Grant to develop the Easter Bush Campus into a haven for hedgehogs and other wildlife. 

Sarah Batiste, Niamh Duthie and Niamh Kinch will use the funding – made possible by donations to the university - to survey the site and establish where improvements might be best made. 

Sarah Batiste commented: “We are extremely lucky to work and study in a campus that is surrounded by green and forested landscapes and home to significant biodiversity. We would like to create spaces that foster and promote this by supporting dwindling hedgehog populations.”

Among the planned improvements include safe water sources, ramps in ponds and increased wildflower coverage. The team also hopes to install an on-site wildlife camera to measure the impact of their efforts and signs to alert drivers of hedgehog populations.

The project, expected to take around a year, builds on previous measures to develop the campus into a place where hedgehogs can safely feed, shelter and breed. 

In February, the University of Edinburgh scooped a silver accreditation as a hedgehog-friendly campus, and a 2020 survey revealed hedgehog footprints in temporary tunnels around Easter Bush Campus. 

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Budding 'Dr Dolittles' sought for writing competition

News Story 1
 Vets are being invited to enter a writing competition run by the Page Turner Awards for a chance to get their story published or even made into a film.

Dubbed the 'Rolls Royce' of writing awards, the Page Turner competition provides an opportunity for aspiring writers to submit unpublished fiction and non-fiction work to be read by a panel of influential players in the publishing industry.

A spokesperson said: 'Do you think of yourself as a magical healer, like Dr Dolittle. Or maybe you have a story to share about the times when, sadly, animals can't be treated, and pet owners reflect on those moments they took for granted."

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News Shorts
Avian influenza confirmed in Lancashire

A case of highly pathogenic (HPAI H5N8) avian influenza has been confirmed in two captive peregrine falcons on a non-commercial, non-poultry premises near Skelmersdale, West Lancashire.

Following a risk assessment, APHA has declared that no disease control zones have been put in place surrounding this non-commercial, non-poultry premises.

Eighteen cases of HPAI H5N8 have now been identified in poultry and other captive birds in England. A housing order for poultry and captive birds introduced by Defra to control the spread of the disease expired on 31 March, although bird keepers in England are still required by law to comply with biosecurity measures.

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