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and 1 makes 5

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings and 1 makes 5

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 16 total)
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    Just popped out in the garden and found a small hog, that makes 5 visiting now plus I will have another 4 back from overwintering with the carer in the next week (I hope). Hope you like the pic, just got the camera and there was a very inquisitive hog!! Lots of pics, just don’t know how to upload them (other than on my profile page!) Technophobe!! Hope more people come back soon, I miss the posts!


    Wow that’s great news, I have had no sightings hoping it’s temporarily quiet. Would love to all those pricklies running round the garden lucky devil.


    Hi wildlifehaven, fingers crossed that you have a sighting soon! I’ve just marked another but I can’t say that it isn’t one I marked earlier but the marking has come off. Hope it’s not and I now have 6 visitors!!


    last year three hedgehogs were visiting. My hubby made openings in two sides of a washing up bowl (turned upside down the bowl made a safe “food outlet”) for them. We get feral cats and foxes, so food is also an attraction for them but they cannot get into the bowl.
    Three nights ago our cctv was triggered and one hedgehog came snuffling into view. Out went the bowl and he / she went straight for the “feeding hole” and came out looking very pleased! Hopefully we will see the others as the season progresses.


    Nice one Dawn, I feed my tribe in a hoghouse, a hogitat and the bottom of a small 3 tier greenhouse (the pic on my profile if from there). I, too, have cats roaming round but they only seem interested in the biscuits I put out for the hogs. I, now, put biscuits out for the cats and they don’t seem interested in going into the hogs feeding places. Although I do have a great ‘you’ve been caught’ pic of one of the cats from the first night. I had to keep it as it makes me laugh!


    Hello – I’m a newbie and this is my first post. I was researching on the internet and asked just how many hedgehogs would be considered normal to visit our garden – that lead me to this site and here I am. Well – I have seven regular visitors. I can recognise them pretty much with no need to mark them in any way – I would never do that! I have two babies which are growing quite fast. Three intermediate sized ones and two full grown adults which I think are male and female. There were five of them out there the other night – three on the patio and the two youngsters at the feeding dish just outside the patio windows. We have been feeding them on chopped up peanuts, sunflower hearts, chopped up dog treats and dried mealworms. We also leave out three water bowls dotted around. They appear to adore the mealworms. We have an organic garden so they can feed on slugs safely. The regular routine seems to be – gorge on the food we have left out for them. Have a good long drink of water and then separate out to go foraging around the garden for about three quarters of an hour and then back for some more easy food! First visitor usually comes soon after nine and we watch them until it is too dark for us to see them. We are considering getting an outside camera to record their activities.

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    Hi Boss Hogg

    Welcome to the Forum!

    Seven sounds a pretty good number to have visiting. The babies do grow incredibly fast, don’t they! I am pleased to hear that you recognise the hedgehogs naturally – I do the same – it is actually much easier than people think. The numbers may change a bit at different times of the year – for instance the boys tend to go off to hibernate earlier than the girls and return earlier, etc.

    It sounds a lovely place for them there, being organic – hopefully lots of worms and beetles for them to eat as well. The only thing I would mention is to go easy on the chopped peanuts, sunflower hearts and especially mealworms. All of these have a ratio of calcium to phosphorous which means that they can be implicated in metabolic bone disease in hedgehogs. The calcium is leached from the bones causing problems with fractures, etc. Probably the nearest thing in humans is osteoporosis. They do love mealworms, but hoglets, in particular can become a bit addicted to them and not want to eat anything else. They, of course, are also more at risk from metabolic bone disease. You may need to ween the hogs off mealworms, etc. gradually, but it is worth doing – especially as you have hoglets around. You might want to have a look at

    on this forum which will tell you more about metabolic bone disease. It is something which has become more topical comparatively recently and makes it all the more important that we all improve the habitat in our gardens so the hogs can eat more natural food. Sounds like you are already well off to a good start in that respect.

    Cat/dog or reputable hedgehog foods should all be fine and it is really good that you are providing plenty of water and that they are foraging in your garden as well.

    If you want to see the hogs for longer, I usually leave the outside light on whilst I am feeding them and they don’t seem to mind it at all. Alternatively you could use solar garden lights. I think they may be more upset if the light goes on and off like a security light, but if it is on all the time they are feeding, they just don’t seem to take any notice of it. I normally only feed for a couple of hours each night, so just leave the light on during that time. The rest of the night, hopefully, they are off foraging or doing wild hedgehoggy things. It is much better for them to eat natural wild food than anything we can offer them.

    Cameras are very useful for some things, i.e. watching different parts of the garden, etc., but I find nothing really beats watching the hogs in real time. The cameras seem to have a habit of switching off just when the interesting behaviour is starting! Or the hogs go just out of sight. Having said that I got a couple of cams this year and it is interesting to see who is coming and going at the end of the garden.

    Good luck with your band of hog visitors and happy hog watching.


    I have read the links – thank you. Obviously didn’t realise about the mealworms. I had previously looked up what to feed hedgehogs on and mealworms came up as one of the foods they can be given. We also feed lots of birds so always have plenty of mealworms and nuts and seeds etc. Have prepared the hogs supper minus the worms tonight just to see how they react. With quite a few visiting, the dish by the patio doors is usually eaten all up. The food on the lower patio is just put straight onto the slabs and the hogs can spread out a bit. We’ll let them finish what the birds haven’t had today and then put any future mealworms on the bird trays and feeders so the birds don’t miss out. I think I would like to encourage them to all be on the bottom patio.

    Our steps out the back are quite steep and they have to use their ingenuity to get down to garden level. I know they can climb quite well but I made some little steps for the hoglets today just to make it a bit easier for them! I like them in the garden because then I know they are pretty safe for a while at least.

    We do have lights in the garden – but think Blackpool Illuminations! I shall have to sort out our solar lights. Thank you again for the info.

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    Hi BossHogg

    I think the mealworm thing has only come to light fairly recently. Before that, I think quite a few of us were feeding, at least some, mealworms. I know it is only supposed to be supplementary feeding, but I wonder whether with some people leaving food out all night, it may be becoming a bit more than that for some hogs.

    I know what you mean about liking them being in the garden so they are safe. There are so many hazards for the poor little things out there. Love the sound of the mini steps for hoglets!


    Hello Nic

    Well the steps worked. Saw one hoglet using them. Hurrah. We had just four visitors last night at the usual time. The dish feeder by the doors was ignored for ages and three medium sized hogs were down on the lower patio feeding. Then they all dispersed for garden patrol. One hoglet finally came to the dish feeder by the doors and was munching away quite happily – no worms. The main reason we have been supplementing their diet is to get the two little ones to the acceptable weight for hibernation. The way they are growing though I don’t think there will be any worries there!

    By the way – this is how I first knew that we had a hedgehog. I saw one eating the bird food left on the ground (for the ground feeding birds) one night. We then decided to keep more of a vigil and put out more food that the hedgehog would like. We were so excited when we saw two, then three etc – as I mentioned previously we now have seven! They might have been around for a while but we just didn’t know about them. Always had a tendency to draw the curtains early….. not any more!

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    Hi Boss Hogg

    Brilliant that the hoglets are using their steps already. Clever little things! I don’t think you need to worry about the early hoglets which are around now making the weight for hibernation. It is really the much later ones. I am always amazed at how quickly they grow. Glad to hear they are still eating the food with no mealworms.

    I first knew there were hogs here when I saw them eating the birds’ left overs as well. That was many years ago. Where I lived before, we had outdoor cats and the hogs used to come and finish off their food. I suspect that many people have hedgehogs in their gardens without knowing about it. They don’t know what they’re missing!


    On a very wet night recently there were quite a few slugs on our patio and quite a bit of food for the birds and the hedgehogs. When the hedgehogs came they ignored the slugs and ate the rest of the stuff! The hoglets are getting really big and my three intermediate sized hogs are now nearly the same size as the two adults. Would like to get a good photo of them all eating together. The most so far is 5, then I’ll upload a picture.

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    Hi Boss Hogg

    The slugs can be a bit of a pest. I had a quiet spell a while back – probably after the dry weather, but they are now back in force. They seem to be able to sense the food from a long way away. The hogs here often share a bowl with the big slugs. I think it is only the tiny ones that they eat, but they say those are the ones who do the worst damage to plants, so that’s good! I saw one of the slugs looking as if it was tucking in to one of the hog poos! Don’t mind if they do that.

    The hoglets here don’t all turn up at once – they are very independent and I have only once seen 3 in the area at the same time but not eating together. They seem to be a bit competitive. Completely different to the hoglets last year, who seemed to prefer sharing bowls, but they were later hoglets. Would love to see a photo of the hogs all eating together. Are you putting it on the gallery?


    Hello Nic

    Have still got the lighting situation to sort out as it is getting dark so quickly now. Also getting to grips with a new camera. I think it is a case of ‘watch this space.’ Once everything is sorted I will try to get a good pic and upload to the gallery. Would be great to get a few of them on the bottom patio again, they are all coming a different times at the moment. We only seem to get two together at the bottom currently. The two hoglets make me laugh. They tend to feed from the dish by the patio doors. In fact they both stand in the dish and completely cover it – munching away.

    The wildlife around here is great. Yesterday we had to break up a fight with four jays and a magpie. The jays were mobbing the magpie in our flowering redcurrant bush. It was shaking from side to side. We’ve got two young jays and two adults that come regularly and ditto for the magpies, two youngsters and two adults. Four jays against one young magpie – a bit unfair we thought and what a racket!

    This afternoon a sparrowhawk landed on the fence and stayed for a minute or two. Deathly silence – no birds at all. Wise – very wise.


    Last year we had one huge hog visiting the garden and as we haven’t had hogs in our garden for 40 years we were thrilled. We made a feeding station out of a large plastic container which the hog visited for about 3 weeks then disappeared. This year we have a hog living under our decking and it eats the hedgehog biscuits every night in fact it’s now got quite fat. One evening I saw two hogs standing nose to nose and making a grunting noise, not sure what that was all about. My question is how much food should we be putting out. At the moment we put 50 grams divided between 2 little bowls and it is all gone in the morning. Is this too much food as we don’t want to make the hog dependant on this foods and stop it foraging for more natural food.

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