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Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Mealworms Reply To: Mealworms

#8890

Nic

Hi Lucycroft

It might seem that way until you look into it more deeply. If you are feeding mealworms you are potentially encouraging the hedgehogs to fill up on mealworms and not to eat natural food which would be much better for them. Also if they are really on the verge of starving, they will eat something else. I suspect that the hogs you thought died of starvation may have had other underlying problems. If they eat only mealworms that could cause them to die of starvation, in that they would not be getting sufficient nutrients for their survival. Becoming addicted to mealworms can definitely be life threatening to hedgehogs. The young ones, in particular, can become horribly deformed as a result of eating mealworms and probably suffer a great deal of pain. I take it you have seen the Vale Wildlife Hospital video including the image of a young hedgehog with metabolic bone disease.

So in answer to your question. No I don’t think it is worth risking them getting bone density problems (sounds so insignificant described as such) nor malnutrition by feeding only mealworms.

The best thing you can do for the hedgehogs is to improve and increase their habitat so that they can find their own natural wild food and water. You say you already have a large garden/wood, which sounds brilliant. I think all of us could improve our gardens for hogs in some way and if you haven’t seen it already, it is worth looking at https://www.hedgehogstreet.org/help-hedgehogs/helpful-garden-features/
and of course make holes in fences and encourage others to do likewise.

Hedgehog