Got a sighting…What now?
1st July 2018 at 1:39 pm #10256
My wife saw a rat OR a hedgehog when watering the plants yesterday. I set up the wildlife camera and overnight it recorded a very obvious hedgehog.
I’m delighted; the key now is to keep it around here! Any hints and tips received. Here’s what we have so far:
Half the garden is decking (too expensive to take up) and half is lawn, including a log pile, lots of overgrown areas, and a compost bin that’s overflowing. The rear of the garden backs on to a residential road with green “edging” and has a hedgehog hole in it that I made a few months ago. The left and right borders of the garden are fences of wood, concrete or mesh, depending on where you are.
The visual sighting, and the recorded one, show the hedgehog came from the same part of the lawned garden both times – near the log pile. I’ll set the camera up again tonight and ideally want to put some food out for the hedgehogs – along with water. I’m guessing it may have a hideout in or near the log pile.
Anything else I should be doing? What, if any, food should I put out?1st July 2018 at 6:32 pm #10259
Really pleased to hear it was a hog not a rat!
The following is a link of what to feed hedgehogs. https://www.hedgehogstreet.org/what-should-we-be-feeding-hedgehogs/
You didn’t mention what the left and right boundaries border on to. If they are suitable habitat, or, say, other gardens, you could put holes in them as well. The only problem with having the only hole near a road, is that the hogs are at more risk there.
On one hand, decking doesn’t sound brilliant, but are they able to get underneath it? If so, it might provide potential nesting sites.
For some other things you can do to help hogs in the garden:
The very most important thing for hogs is to provide them with a source of water, preferably 24 hours a day, in case a hog wakes up in the day thirsty. If you don’t have a pond, wide shallow plant saucers are ideal. I would suggest at least 8 inches wide – hogs are experts at tipping water containers over – and not so deep a hoglet could get stuck in it. This is particularly important in this hot dry weather.
Good luck and I hope the hog continues to visit.1st July 2018 at 10:06 pm #10263
Perfect Nic, thanks!
Left and right boundaries are gardens; I think it’s possible that the hog can get under/through both of them. A very wide-brimmed plant saucer is now down, along with the camera again…
I’ll keep people posted – I was told today that dry cat biscuits were a good idea, but I know for a fact that we have foxes in there sometimes, and we also have two cats, so I’ll wait for a little on that…maybe until I can work out how to put some food out that the hog can get and others can’t.2nd July 2018 at 10:09 am #10269
Great news that you have a hog! You are due for hours and hours of entertainment and a few moments of frustration!
Why not build a feeding station? Plastic crate from Homebase or similar – I have a 32 litre ‘really useful’ one. Cut a hole in one end – big enough for a hedgehog but too small for a cat/Fox. Put food in a Dish furthest away from the hole and in front of the hole – inside the box – put a brick or large stone. This will stop cats putting a paw in to pull food out but will allow the hedgie to limbo in! I put my water dish outside the box but others put them both in together. My hogs regularly take a footbath when they drink! They don’t seem to mind the grit!
It won’t stop a rat or huge slugs from sharing the food but will stop cats and foxes!
Enjoy!2nd July 2018 at 9:23 pm #10290
Excellent advice DwarfHog, many thanks!
The great news is that the hog came back – I thought I heard something, decided not to investigate in case I disturbed whatever it was, and then checked the camera today – a definite hog, wandering about!
Homebase at the weekend, then!6th July 2018 at 3:37 pm #10395
Excellent news that you have a hedgehog. I was thrilled when I first had one visit. I had seven last year (all in the garden at the same time). This year I have five fully grown adults. I have a hedgehog highway through the garden. I have four dishes of water out – I have used the shallow plant saucers like someone has suggested. Hedgehogs mostly like to feed first and have a VERY long drink afterwards. In the day the birds like to use the dishes too but if you have cats you might not want to encourage that! We don’t feed our hogs from a saucer or a proper feeding station. We spread the food around over the patio and on a step quite close to our patio doors. We buy special hedgehog food (because they are spoilt) and a few CRUSHED natural peanuts, NOT whole ones, they can get stuck in their mouths. We do NOT feed them mealworms, you may still find this as a feeding suggestion on some sites but it is no longer recommended, as research has suggested that it can affect their bones. The hogs amble around the garden picking up all stuff for their natural diet, slugs etc and might return to the patio for some more food and of course another drink of water. I like to think their diet is varied and we are just assisting by giving them some additional hedgehog food. Anyway enjoy your visiting hedgehog and I hope you get more.
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