RSPB Scotland and NatureScot are looking for a Project Manager to set up a £5 million hedgehog relocation scheme to remove the invasive species from Benbecula and South Uist.
The successful candidate will put the Uist Native Wildlife Project in place to live-capture the hedgehogs and relocate them to mainland Scotland.
Hedgehogs were first introduced to Uist in 1974. Since then, they have spread to almost every corner of the islands. In 1996 they were declared a significant predation threat to ground-nesting birds, including important breeding wader and tern populations. Waders were particularly hard hit, and numbers dropped dramatically.
After several ad hoc projects over the years, NatureScot and RSPB Scotland in 2017 resolved to conduct a feasibility study to remove hedgehogs from Uists using live-capture and long-distance translocation.
Earlier this year, feasibility studies were published on both and proposed international practice standard projects for live trapping and translocation.
The trapping study recommends concentrating efforts on removing hedgehogs entirely from Benbecula and the eradication or long-term control of hedgehogs on South Uist. The translocation study identifies Dumfries and Galloway and South Ayrshire as primary release sites for the island hedgehogs.