Monday, 2 April 2018

Hedgehogs in April • Kay Bullen BHPS

More and more hedgehogs will be waking from their long hibernations. They will be very thirsty, hungry and in some cases weak and unwell.

Keep a good look out for any that need help, the sooner they are rescued the better the chance they will survive. 

Now would be a good time to introduce a new hedgehog box to your garden. Male hedgehogs are more nomadic in the breeding season so may only make and use a nest for a short time, indeed in the warmer weather they may just hide under a pile of leaves rather than making an actual nest. However, the females will be looking for a place to raise their family.  

If you have a new nest box you could sprinkle some hedgehog biscuits inside the box to encourage them in, but once there is an occupant stop leaving food in the box as it may attract other hedgehogs.  A female with new born would not welcome visitors and may abandon her young. Any feeding stations should then be a distance away from the occupied nest box.  

Do not be tempted to look inside the nest box, rather place a small piece of screwed up paper just inside the entrance, this will be pushed aside as the hedgehog emerges and you will know it is occupied.  Repeat after 3-4 days as sometimes a female will not leave the nest for several days after giving birth. It really is important not to disturb the box when it is occupied.

If you are concerned about any hedgehogs you should see contact your local hedgehog rescue or the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (01584 890801), they can give general advice and perhaps details of a local hedgehog rehabilitator that you can contact. 

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