An animal rescuer who specialises in hedgehogs has been forced to temporarily close his doors after being inundated with sick and orphaned animals.
John Claxton, 67, who has run Thorpe St Andrew Rescue from his home for the last six years, said that this year has been "by far the worst" he has seen for the number of animals needing rescuing - blaming changing climates for much of the difficulties.
"There's a number of reasons we've seen such a bad year for hedgehogs, the first is climate change," he said.
"Normally, hedgehogs would only have two or three litters a year. But with the extreme changes in weather, hedgehogs have been having their litters very early in the year.
"We picked up our first litter in late January - that's almost unheard of."
The former health and safety executive inspector currently homes 18 juvenile or injured hedgehogs but at one point was caring for 30.
He said the mammals are having more litters due to the prolonged warm and dry weather.
"They suffer because their food, such as worms and insects, disappears underground to find moisture.
"The litters are then often abandoned by mothers who can't feed them, or who are severely dehydrated and unable to eat."
According to Mr Claxton, baby hedgehogs need to be hand-fed throughout the day and night, needing constant attention.
Hoping to resume his usual responsibilities around Christmas or the new year, Mr Claxton issued a plea to those who find hedgehogs in need.
"I've always said; if you see a hedgehog out in the daytime, it's in trouble.
"Contact someone immediately and have them assess it."
"And if you can, please donate to Hodmedods Hedgehog Support, they do invaluable work."