13th February 2020 at 10:42 am #21146
Just joined as a result of:
1) rescuing a hedgehog in our garden the other day which was about to be pounced upon by a gang of magpies. I got there just in time because it was surrounded and they were just about to have it!
2) now in the process of building a hedgehog feeding station
3) however – aware we have foxes and badgers active in our garden every night.
QUESTION: Am I going to endanger the local hedgehogs, by increasing their chances of being eaten by Badger/Fox if the station draws them out of cover?
I am hoping not because I would love to involve my children and give some food support to the local hedgehog community.
Please advise? THANK YOU!13th February 2020 at 12:01 pm #21147
I’m going to answer in 2 parts.
Firstly, I’ve never heard of a healthy hog being attacked by magpies before and therefore if this is the case I suspect it’s ill and needs expert attention. Also this sounds as if the hog was out in the daytime which is not normal. If you contact the BHPS they will give you a list of carers in your area and you should contact one for help and advice asap.
Please don’t assume that because you’ve got it in captivity and it’s eating that there is nothing wrong with it. People frequently do and find a dead hog on their hands a few days later. Stress of captivity can cause a lot problems to get worse.
Secondly, if you have a badger visiting your garden, then no you cannot encourage your hog to come. To be frank it’s unlikely it would anyway once it knew the badger was there. Badgers can and absolutely will kill hedgehogs in a very nasty way. A hungry fox will also have a go.
Hope that answers your queries15th February 2020 at 10:44 pm #21172
It seems like a badger doesn’t always deter a hedgehog from a feeding station16th February 2020 at 12:22 pm #21173
Yes, sadly it does sometimes happen that a hog will feed next to a badger. However, it is not a good idea to encourage hogs to feed either with foxes or, particularly badgers. Both will eat a hedgehog given the opportunity and I have heard of a badger eating next to a hedgehog who, despite having food left, turned and attacked and killed the hedgehog.
But foxes also will kill hogs. What is normally reported is that the fox waits for the hog to unroll, but if they are encouraged to eat side by side, the hog is already unrolled and is a sitting target.
Foxes and badgers are predators and whilst it might sound a romantic idea that all wild animals live harmoniously together, in reality some of them eat others of them. Left to their own devices it may be less likely to happen (between these 3 particular species), but if we humans are trying to help preserve hedgehogs, we should not be encouraging them into un-natural situations by encouraging predators and prey to eat side by side. Particularly in such close proximity as shown in this photograph. Hogs need to maintain their natural respect for and defences against predators and not be lulled into a false sense of security.
I have no doubt that the person feeding would be very upset if the hog was killed, but sadly, they have set up a situation where it is more likely.
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