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Hi Nic & Snufflewoofs,
The husk in the garden is really a bit of a mystery and I could kick myself for not taking more notice of it at the time, but I was so upset that I just wanted to dispose of it as quickly as possible. The previous evening we had been sat in the garden at dusk on a late summers evening. Out of nowhere appeared a hedgehog which proceeded to criss cross its way across the lawn and then did the usual vanishing trick! I was chuffed to bits, as it was the first time I had ever seen a hedgehog on the back garden in nearly twenty years. The following day I noticed something propped up against the shed at the top of the garden which looked like a pile of straw. At first I had no idea what it was and still thought that it was straw, until I saw two black legs poking out. It was completely flat and the only explanation that I could think of was that it had been baked by the sun, that had bleached its spines and a cat had then dragged it out from a hidden corner and left it there. The problem is, our garden is very shady and to have been baked by the sun it would have to have been in full view for some time. Looking back now, I think that it must have been a blonde hedgehog and it was either eaten by a fox or a badger. We have had the occasional fox on the garden in the past and later that year I took an autumn juvenile to the local rescue which had very pale spines. A fox or badger would certainly explain some of the mysterious movements of the feeding dishes in the past!
An interesting article Nic, but they are only the ones that make it to a rescue; I doubt any victims of a badger attack would ever make it that far.
The formidable Brenda is looking larger than ever, so it’s possible that she could be expecting hoglets, but then again, it would take an incredibly brave male to take her on….maybe she’s just been at the pies again! 🙂