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30th Jun, 2022

Teen hedgehog rescuers to make air waves in Japan

THE CONSERVATION efforts of teenage hedgehog rescuers from Stratford are set to make news in Japan.

Cousins Kyra Barboutis and Sophie Smith are preparing to be interviewed live on one of the country’s biggest television networks Nippon TV.

The 13-year-olds, who run a hospital for poorly and injured hedgehogs from Kyra’s back garden, met with a London-based Japanese TV crew who wanted to spread the word of the girls’ efforts to viewers in Japan. The crew visited Stratford to film some ‘hogspital’ shots which will accompany the interview.

The pair told the Observer: “I can’t believe a Japanese film crew have been out to film us and hopefully next month we will go live on their news channel it’s mind blowing.”

Although hedgehogs are not native in Japan, the African pygmy hedgehog is captive-bred giving rise to controversial hedgehog cafes and commonly kept as a pet.

The pair have also recently launched their very own hedgehog calendar.

Each month features a photograph of the prickly patients and includes information on what wild hedgehogs should be doing each month along with tips on how to help them.

Money raised from the sales will go towards care and treatment supplies.

The duo said: “We spent a lot of time on the calendar and are really pleased with the results. It’s really beautiful with tips on each month on how people can help our humble hedgehogs along with information on what they might be doing each month.

“We have been sending them all over the world. It’s been Incredible.”

The calendars are £7.50 and can be bought from The Old Thatch Tavern or The Ark Veterinary Practice in Stratford, or from Kenilworth Books.

Or visit to buy online.

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