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Hedgehog house… when to clean?

Home Forums Carers / rescuing a hedgehog Hedgehog house… when to clean?

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    About 6 years ago I built a hog house… someone moved in within 48 hours and it has been occupied ever since and they are clearly, breeding. My question… should I be cleaning it out and, if so, when? As far as I can see, it has never not been occupied, except, maybe, in the dead of night when the family are off on their travels.
    And, if I do clean it out whilst they are otherwise occupied, do I need to leave a bit of old bedding and put in some straw?

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    Hi MarkUK

    It seems a bit strange that the box has never been unoccupied in 6 years. Hogs normally change nests from time to time, not least to minimise problems from external parasites. Do you have a camera which checks whether the box is occupied?

    It is normally recommended to clean out the boxes in the Spring and Autumn. Here is a link

    But really if there is a time when you are sure that the box isn’t occupied – by which I mean, not just that the inhabitants have gone out for the night, but if no-one is in residence at all, in the daytime either.

    If you do get a chance to clean it out, you could put a small amount of fresh bedding in, but many hogs prefer to take in their own bedding and arrange it to their satisfaction, so you may like to leave a pile of suitable material nearby. i.e. leaves, long grasses, hay, etc.

    Good luck.


    Hi Nic
    No, I do not have a camera (thinking of getting one but more to check who is taking the food) but the area leading to the box is always well trodden and a little trail of debris into the entrance.
    But will continue to check.. easy enough to put a small twig across the entrance.
    I have provided a lot of alternatives with all my tree and shrub cuttings along a hedge and a wall but they seem to prefer the box.
    Have checked your link… knew that October might be a good time but had not thought about April.

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