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Does anyone have any ADULT hogs visiting which are not hibernating?

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Does anyone have any ADULT hogs visiting which are not hibernating?

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    Some of you have mentioned that the hogs which are still around were hoglets. I would be interested to know whether they are all hoglets. So if anyone has a hog which they know was an adult last year, which is not hibernating, I would love to hear about them.

    Meanwhile, if anyone has hogs around please continue to leave them some food (cat/dog/hog food). Ideally water should be available all day every day, in case any hogs come out of hibernation desperate for a drink.

    If you have no hogs around and have stopped feeding, keep an eye out in case any hogs come out of hibernation, so that you can offer food again. Hogs do sometimes emerge during hibernation and then return to hibernation, but there is also the possibility that some may emerge and not return to hibernation. It’s a good idea to keep cameras running all winter, if possible, in case.

    As mentioned please try to leave water available all day every day, all year round.



    Hi Nic, I have at least two still coming in for food. Both hoglets But a good weight. Food being eaten, but looks like they are winding down.
    I still leave a camera out to monitor, which will be out all winter. One was collecting nesting material and taking it in the box. But I did stuff it full of hay for it.



    Hi Nic I am still feeding hedgehogs every night they are visiting on average of up to 20 times a night. A couple of nights ago I had three feeding at once. They are all juveniles but a good size except for a couple that look a bit on the small size but they know where the food is so are keeping themselves stocked up. I will catch them and weigh them if I see them on the live camera but otherwise I am happy with them. I have 4 indoors that needed a bit of help ie. Fluke ringworm underweight etc. That have been treated and will be released in the Spring. Otherwise the Hoglet Hotel is pretty successful. I think if there are any adult hedgehogs out it could be that they are in difficulty (my first poorly adult came out of hibernation this time last year) but please put food and water out all year round they will be desperate if poorly.


    Yes , as mentioned a few days ago, we have one adult, in good healthy conditon. It had started to hibernate on the 12th December and then last week it awoke, had a few ticks which rapidly fell off, and now the animal is eating well at 19.30, 20,30, 23,00, 03.00 as recorded on the cameras.

    On the same day a juvenile [300 g] was wandering around I rescued that one.

    The next day, another different adult was seen about a kilometer away [whilst the first was seen feeding] so we have at least two, and it would seem a general awakening maybe is on the way, which is not unreasonable goven the temperatures and general weather.

    We constanstantly monitor, and always have food and water available

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    Hi Willpar, Hoglet and Igel

    Thanks for your replies. I really meant adult hogs which had not hibernated at all, Igel, as opposed to those which may have emerged briefly, or those which have come out of hibernation early. Sorry I didn’t make myself clearer.

    It seems that most hogs that do not hibernate at all are hoglets. Although it may be that they are just the ones which are mentioned more often. (which is what I would like to try to fnd out). But it isn’t only hoglets which may not lay down enough fat for hibernation. Sometimes the adults don’t either, only it’s probably less noticeable that they aren’t heavy enough (for their size). But it’s possible it’s those (that hadn’t got sufficient fat) which are coming out of hibernation early – and lucky that they have found someone to feed them. If we disregard hazards caused by humans, hibernation is one of the most dangerous times of a hog’s life. Some just may not wake up at all if they don’t have enough of the correct type of fat to wake themselves up.

    The hog here who hasn’t hibernated is an adult and this is the second year she hasn’t hibernated. But what I am wondering, is whether she is an exception.

    Good luck with all the rescues, hope they all do well.


    Well , over the years it has been variable, some years some adults dont go to sleep at all. At least those that we see on camera, who are well used to getting a regular source of food, and are probably fat [relatively] and in good condition. We have seen them running around in pretty cold conditons, seemingly quite happy.

    However, those that are not on camera, and thus not being observed, and hence dont know about the abundant food source [ circular argument] are near to starvation at this time of the year, and hence their only strategy metabolically, is to go into dormancy [ and take the risk]. But as we dont see those we have not got a clue.

    However, our hedgehog rescue centre does report that it is just not uncommon for some hogs never to go into dormancy regardless. But as you say, it is a matter of metabolic conditons. [Temperature, Fat, Nest Insulation, Food Type and Availability and Air Pressure/Temp* [ ie gut air pressure] as to whether they are conditioned to go into torpor or not.] All we can do is keep watching are reporting.

    Neighbours are also watching out, so will report any further sightings

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    Hi Igel

    No they don’t seem to mind the cold at all. Here, all the others have hibernated, despite having continued access to food. It may be a coincidence that the hog still here hasn’t hibernated for a second time. She had a very disrupted year, having to spend months in Wildlife Hospital following a life threatening injury. So although, she is recovered and fit and well again, there’s no way of knowing whether that had any impact on her choice of whether to hibernate or not again this year, but it may have.

    But yes, sadly, there may be many other hogs, unobserved, who don’t make it through hibernation time, for various reasons. Normally they would go into hibernation whilst they still had sufficient fat to keep them ticking over (and of course the other type of fat they need to start them up again), but if they wait until they are starving, it seems unlikely they will survive.

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    I’d just like to add. It wasn’t me who said “it is a matter of metabolic conditons. [Temperature, Fat, Nest Insulation, Food Type and Availability and Air Pressure/Temp* [ ie gut air pressure] as to whether they are conditioned to go into torpor or not.]” Must have been someone else.

    In my opinion, hibernation is a complex thing and it’s likely that both going into hibernation and emerging from it are triggered by a combination of factors. i.e. I think it is too simplistic to say that it is triggered by temperature/weather conditions or food availability, etc. Sadly, we don’t really know enough about it yet (and it may be one of those secrets which hogs never completely reveal!), although various people may have various theories.

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