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Home Forums Carers / rescuing a hedgehog Possible hoglets? Reply To: Possible hoglets?

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Hi Alez4003

Don’t worry if they don’t use all the material you leave out now. They might feel in need of it later on and it’s good to give them a choice.

Hibernation can be a bit variable. Some hogs – mostly hoglets I’ve heard about so far – decide not to hibernate at all. Although the ones I have seen seem to, perhaps, slow down a bit and spend more time napping between snacks. But it wouldn’t surprise me with the way the climate is these days, and other factors, if that sort of thing doesn’t happen more often.

But hogs have long been known to change nest during the hibernation period, so will need other sites where they can make nests – and materials, of course. The fat reserves they lay down should allow for short periods of activity during the hibernation period.

What triggers hibernation is not fully understood, so it may not be only the temperature which causes them to venture out again. So it’s best to leave water always available (all day every day) and some people continue to leave some food out. If you notice a hog is around, I would offer food again if you have stopped (not too close to the hibernation nest, in case it attracts predators). I tend to leave my cameras running all winter as well, in case anyone is out and about. Then food can be offered the next night, in case. I also leave food out for at least a week after I’ve seen the last hog. But some hogs will pretty much disappear until the Spring – as far as we’re concerned.

It’s a very worrying time for us hog lovers and probably the most naturally dangerous time for the hogs. They have to get the fat layers, just right – one type to keep their metabolism just ticking over and the other to raise their metabolism again when they emerge. That’s why it’s important they are able to get sufficient good quality food prior to hibernation. That doesn’t mean fat – just their normal diet which they convert to the particular types of fat they need. But also that they are not disturbed whilst hibernating which could cause them to use up too much of that precious fat.

But, such a delight in the Spring when hogs return again!

Good luck to the hogs there and everywhere for a safe hibernation.