Sounds a good idea to clean out the boxes when you are sure there is no one in residence. Apart from anything else, they may have left eggs from some of their little visitors behind.
Last night a (good sized) hoglet decided to make a nest in my (wooden) feeding box. I had put a new cardboard, temporary, division in to deter the cat which I saw getting in there the night before. I was worried the new partition might put the hoglets off, but it seems to have had the opposite effect. Once again a hog has done the unpredictable!
There were a very few leaves in the box to start with, but I saw on the cam the little hog making numerous visits with huge mouthfuls of leaves. Interestingly, there is a nearby box with loads of easily accessible dry leaves in it, but the little hog decided to collect it’s own from the garden. It reinforces my feeling that they prefer to make their own nests. So my feeling remains that it’s best to just put a few leaves in and make sure there are loads of other ones around nearby.
I was also interested in the choice of materials. There were some quite stalky bits included, whereas I would have gone for softer leaves. I should know by now that hogs know best!
Not sure if the little one is planning on hibernating in there, but, unfortunately, I think there is probably some food left in the bowl underneath so hope it doesn’t get too nasty. I look forward to seeing what, if anything, happens tonight. The box entrance is in good view from the house and right opposite the camera (can’t believe my luck), so hopefully it or I will see if anything happens.
I haven’t seen the mature female hog for the last two nights, but haven’t checked all the cam footage for last night yet.