Hedgehog 2013-2014

See the main hedgehog page for more current news.

I showed live video of the hedgehog here over winter 2013-14 before it was released in the spring.

2014-November-12 The garden hedgehog didn't continue spending the day in the box, but more recently one has been taking interest in the box during the night, and several visit the garden for food. I've taken in a small one (236g) which I'd seen on camera for over-wintering, so I'm going to archive this page, and continue with the story of this new hedgehog on the main hedgehog page.

2014-August-22 5 months on. One or more hedgehogs have visited every night for food inside the box, and been 'captured' by the video camera, but always departed before dawn to head off to wherever they stay during the daytime. But two nights ago, 2014-August-20, there were lots of video motion-captures in the hour before dawn as a hedgehog dragged in 'nesting material', and then stayed inside for the following day. It then didn't stay the next night, but last night again brought in more material and stayed in again. I'm not sure whether I should still be putting food inside daily - still have so far, as I can do it with little disturbance to the box, but longer term, if a hedgehog stays in it during the day, then maybe I should provide food elsewhere.

2014-March-22 I've been putting food in the box out in the garden, and the hedgehogs have soon learned about it. I think I've seen 'my' one on camera (difficult to be sure about the marking with the infra-red camera - would have to go outside and catch it to be certain), and saw a couple engaging in what I assume was courtship behaviour. No sign yet of the box being used as anything other than a convenient food source - the hedgehogs aren't staying in it during the day, and haven't added any nesting material.

2014-March-14 The hedgehog was released. I removed the wire-netting enclosure, and left the shed door open. I saw it leave on camera, part-way through the night. A hedgehog (don't know if same one) briefly entered the shed again later in the night, but didn't stay. I've made a 'hedgehog box' for out in the garden, using an old recycling box, so this one or others will have a potential nest-site.

2014-March-8 Weighed the hedgehog again: 632g, so increasing. Also 'marked' it (some yellow water-based emulsion paint - vague 'circle' at right-rear). This is to give me a chance of recognising if if I see it again after release, and is a different 'pattern' to the marked one which already visits the garden.

2014-March-3 The captive hedgehog emerged from hibernation last night - it was last active on 2014-Jan-20. Its behaviour seemed exactly as before, with several excursions from the nest-box, drinking, and eating some of the dry food. I weighed it this morning - 614g. It was 682g when last weighed on 2014-Jan-2. I will consider releasing it soon - perhaps after it puts on a bit more weight.

The 'garden' hedgehog is visiting each night, and I weighed it last night - 636g.

2014-February-24 The captive hedgehog is still hibernating, but on last night's video capture from the garden, I saw a hedgehog (perhaps not full size?) out and about. I've not been checking the video regularly, so this might not be the first activity of the year.

2014-January-27 No activity (at least outside the 'nest box') for a week now. Hedgehog last seen, briefly at the entrance, a week ago. The camera's motion-detection will record video if there is any activity, and I would notice disturbance in the enclosure, or consumption of the food.

2014-January-19 Once again, no prolonged 'hibernation' yet, but the hedgehog has been inactive for the last two days, after quite an active night 3 days ago.

2014-January-16 The hedgehog was active for about half an hour around 5am this morning - the first activity for about 3 days. There still haven't been very low temperatures this winter, with only one brief dip to around freezing so far.

2014-January-12 The night before last, the hedgehog was active for the first half of the night, but there were no signs of activity last night.

2014-January-10 After 2 days of inactivity, the hedgehog emerged for about half-an-hour at around 06:00 this morning. It disturbed the food, but I'm not sure whether it ate any. It stuffed yet more newspaper into the cardboard box before disappearing inside again.

2014-January-8 At 02:18 this morning, the hedgehog entered the 'nest' cardboard box, and as of two days later hasn't emerged again, so I assume it is now hibernating. I've left some dry food, and water. I won't put the video online, as there is no activity, but I'll catch any signs either by the motion detection from the camera, or signs of disturbance in the enclosure.

2014-January-2 Weight 682g this morning - an increase of 16g in 7 days, or 248g in the total of 49 days since taking it in. I moved the enclosure from a cool place inside the house to the shed outside. For the last few days, I offered mainly tinned dog food, and the hedgehog ate it. It seems that if I offer sufficient sunflower hearts and mealworms etc. then the hedgehog eats just those and ignores the dog food, but I thought it should be getting more variety. Not surprisingly, the weight eaten is greater with the 'wet' food, since most of it is water.

2013-December-26 Weight 666g this morning - an increase of 22g in 7 days, or 232g in the total of 42 days since taking it in.

2013-December-19 Weight 644g this morning - an increase of 8g in 7 days, or 210g in the total of 35 days since taking it in. I decided to remove the heat-mat from under the 'nest-box' area, after all it's inside a house, rather than outside where it would normally be, and is probably now a fairly safe weight if it decided to hibernate.

2013-December-12 Weight 636g this morning - an increase of 54g in 10 days, or 202g in the total of 28 days since taking it in. It is eating around 25g food per night, but this is mainly sunflower 'hearts', plus sultanas, peanuts, and cat 'crunchies'. Any dried mealworms offered are usually eaten. I'm still offering small quantities of 'wet' dog or cat food, but the hedgehog doesn't eat much of it.

2013-December-2 Weight 582g this morning - an increase of 14g in 5 days. The hedgehog seems to have decided that it prefers 'dry' food to the 'wet' dog or cat food.

2013-November-27 I intended to weigh the hedgehog once per week, but just realised that I'm a day early. Anyway, 568g this morning, so an increase of 42g in 6 days. Although not such a rapid increase as earlier, it's still well-within the limits of normality. Food consumption has been about 120g per day recently, and presently mainly tinned cat food (meat in jelly kind), as a change from the dog food.

2013-November-21 Weighed again this morning, and now 526g - an increase of 92g in 7 days.

2013-November-14 A smallish hedgehog had been visiting the garden each night for food. I weighed it and found it was 434g. General opinion is that a hedgehog of this weight will not survive winter outside, so I have taken it in. It's in an enclosure in a cold part of the house, with a heat-mat underneath a cardboard 'nest-box'. So far it appears in good health, and is eating around 140g of dog food each night. The aim is that it reaches 700g or so in weight, and then most likely hibernates still indoors and is released again in spring. It could also be released outside when of a suitable weight, but as it's already late November, it is unlikely that the weather outside will seem suitable.

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Author: Clarke Brunt (clarke.brunt@viridis.net)
Last modified: 12th November 2014