You did exactly the right thing to check if a hog was in residence. April is a good time to clean out – it would be a bit early for the babies to be born, although again not unheard of – and it would depend on that year’s weather as to when they came out of hibernation – but then don’t do it again until either early autumn or really next year.
All mum’s are different but as a general rule she will stay with them for 2/3 day’s before venturing out. However if she knows a food source is very close she may be tempted earlier.
While mum’s are known to abandon/kill their young – it is rare!
In all the years I’ve been working with hogs on only one occassion has a mum truly abandoned her babies. She may leave the nest for 12 – 24hrs but usually comes back – unless splattered on the road
I have even had several instances where babies are brought to me that people think are abandoned and then they find mum a day later – in all those instances mum has gone straight back to her babies and reared them – even though they were in a cage somewhere completely different
Don’t worry too much about nest cleaning
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