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Home Forums Champions’ chat Hibernation 2019 Reply To: Hibernation 2019

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Hi Ziggysue

Welcome to the Forum. Yes, you are lucky to have had hogs visiting!

I would put the hog house out in the garden. Hogs build a hibernaculum which is quite intricate and insulated so that they maintain the correct body temperature. That would be built inside the box. They don’t need to be too warm. Some people think they are sleeping during hibernation, but it isn’t really quite like that. Rather their bodily functions just all slow down, so that they don’t use up too much energy. It’s a clever way of surviving when their natural food sources (beetles, caterpillars, etc.) become less available in the cold weater.

So that if they become too warm, they might temporarily come out of hibernation, which might waste some of the energy they have put down in the form of fat. There are two types of fat (maybe think of them as a bit like fuel) one type keeps them ticking over and the other is to help them wake up and get going again after hibernation. So it’s important that none of this energy gets wasted.

Occasionally hogs will choose to hibernate in an open shed/garage. In effect, that is just like an extra large hog house – so not like a room attached to the house. Personally, I would try to avoid hogs coming into the house at all. They might hide away somewhere and get shut in by mistake. But they are just in general better off outside.

When you get your box, think very carefully about where you want to put it. (a shady quiet part of the garden). It’s best not to move them too much, because sometimes hogs need to think of them as ‘part of the landscape’ before they’ll use them. Other times they might take to them straight away, so you might be lucky. I would try to collect some suitable bedding and leave it near to the hog house. Most hogs prefer to do their own interior decoration, especially for hibernation nests. Maybe put a small amount inside to give them the idea, but let them build the rest. So, leaves (medium sized ones are best), long grasses, hay, etc.

Good luck. I hope you get a tenant for your box.