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Hedgehog Release Question

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Hedgehog Release Question

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  • #21971

    Hi all,
    Hope everyone is well.
    So, last year we had a hedgehog in the garden that was severely underweight and we were advised to keep her until spring and release her. We fed her and she decided to hibernate at a weight of 800g. We built a large enclosure in the garden and made sure she was safe. She woke up a week or so ago and has been eating and drinking well and weighs 607g. We have been advised she can now be released, so, we cut a hole in the enclosure and attached a “cat proof” tunnel for her to leave as well as make it accessible for her or others to return. However, she hasn’t left or even used the tunnel? Is this because the tunnel is scary to her or is she simply happy where she is? Do we have to lift her out of the enclosure? Any tips would be welcome.


    Well done for doing such a great job with the little one.
    I am not an expert so I would wait for Nic, Stef, or someone who is used to doing releases to get back to you.
    My gut feeling is the tunnel might be a bit of an unknown. We have a feeder with a pipe going into the food area and one HH just won’t use it.
    If you are recommended to remove the tunnel just make sure the HH can’t cut itself on any of the bits you have cut Sorry I can’t be of much help. Hopefully one of the experts will get back to you soon.
    Good luck and let us know how it goes.


    Hi, as long as the tunnel is big enough for her to leave by I wouldn’t worry.
    Hogs don’t always just rush off. I had one that stayed 6 months in an open hutch despite regularly being disturbed before deciding to move off. I’ve also had them stay days in a cardboard release box. It’s all down to the hog – and often it’s safer for them to leave very slowly rather than just rush off.
    If it’s a female as you intimate it won’t be rushing off to find a mate either, but will be focussed on fattening up
    Just keep leaving food and water for it and let it do it’s own thing


    Thanks all.
    Well, last night she up and left but for some reason the wildlife camera did not pick up her leaving which is sad but I expect she will return at some stage. We had a good year last year with many hedgehogs visiting and I hope they continue to do so.


    I rescued 11 hoglets last November and December all small and wouldn’t have survived.
    I managed to find someone who had more experience than I have in rearing them. She kindly took them all and they all survived.
    I’m now in the process of receiving them back for release.

    I have released two males and think they have stayed around here looking at my trial cam.
    The weather has turned cold so for the last two nights the next two males have stayed with me.
    As soon as the weather settled I will release them.

    Hopefully I will receive two females over the weekend to release.



    Thought thought there was just one hedgehog visiting my garden, yesterday morning just before dawn found 3 quite large hogs all together in the garden. Thrilled they are visiting.

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    Hi Iluvmyhogs

    Really pleased to hear that the hogs are going home to be released. Don’t be surprised if the males, in particular, gradully move on to another area. That isn’t unusual even with hoglets which have hibernated normally.

    Good luck. Hope all goes well. Happy hog watching.

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    Hi Navylark

    That must have been a lovely surprise to find 3 hedgehogs! I hope you continue to enjoy their visits.

    Good luck and happy hog watching.

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