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Good news about having a contact with a hedgehog carer. Also that someone near you is feeding too. Takes the pressure off worrying when you are away!
When it comes nearer the time, and you see a hedgehog who looks small, you can catch it and weight it. Once you have weighed one, you get a pretty good idea of the size you need to be looking out for. But it is much to early to be worrying about that for a while yet. If they are over the required weight, you can leave them to hibernate at a time of their choice. Obviously the longer they are about the heavier they are going to get and greater chance they have. The hoglet who stayed up here last winter turned up on even the coldest of nights. He made a nest in one of the feed boxes which he used for a nap now and then and occasionally spent the day there, but not always.
There is, sadly, quite a high mortality rate during hibernation, however heavy the hedgehog is and not all of them will survive. In the same way, not all the hoglets who are taken in for over-wintering will survive. It is very stressful for them to be taken into captivity, hence seeing what the weather is like and giving them a chance to put on weight ‘in the wild’. Likewise, it’s stressful to them to be weighing them too often, so that you don’t want to start weighing too soon.
Re. the hog house. You might like to read:
I can only say the hoglet here just started from scratch. There were a fair few leaves and long grasses around and he took in a mixture of all, including some fresh green vegetation which he ‘picked’. All was woven together. So I would leave lots of suitable materials nearby and let them decide what they want. They are much better at building nests than we could ever be!