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Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings They like playing with their food bowl cover Reply To: They like playing with their food bowl cover

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Hi Jan

Judging by the footage I have seen from Penny’s cam, the picture is better than mine and that is a very good price too. Some of them are really expensive.

Not everyone will agree, but you can tell the difference between males and females from their behaviour, but mostly by watching over a period of time. Both can be grumpy at times, but, here, I find that the females usually just grumpily nudge another hog out of the way, rather than the full blown ‘biffing’ and fighting which the boys get involved in.

If you see the hedgehog courtship ‘dance’ it should be fairly obvious who is who. The female tends to back off from the male when he approaches. The male circles the female and she turns round and round (and kind of goes backwards) in the middle of the circle so she is pretty much keeping her head towards him. By circle, I don’t mean exactly a circle, as this ‘performance’ can move along a bit. She is usually the one doing the ‘huffing’ i.e. making the characteristic noise. This can go on for hours until either she decides he is a suitable father for her hoglets, or one or other of them gives up and runs off.

You cannot tell male from female by their size. Some males can be quite small and some females quite large. I think they tend to get larger as they age. Having said that, here, the really big hogs are males. Apart from the squabbling, they have an easier life in general. Once they have done their bit, the females are left to get on with rearing the hoglets on their own and it is unlikely that the males even know who their offspring are – especially as one litter of hoglets can have more than one Father.