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How much does my help assist hedgehogs

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings How much does my help assist hedgehogs

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    I have lived at my current address for over 10 years which is in a rural setting and in this time have seen the odd hedgehog around, after finding out that hedgehogs were declining I decided to put an area aside for hedgehogs in the garden, this has woodchip ground cover, a ceramic shallow drinking bowl and initial one small bowl of food. Decided to set up a camera in case a hedgehog visited us, the first night one hedgehog visited the garden and helped his self to the food and water, revamped the garden and put in hedgehog highways and as a carpenter built a hedgehog box.

    To date we have 5 hedgehogs visit us each night, they use the hedgehog entrance holes that I have put in, one has taken up residence in one of the hedgehog box’s (we now have 4) they come at dusk and stay until 4am and have a good time eating and drinking.

    This has been achieved over 3 weeks, as they saying goes every little helps but to be honest I didn’t think my little bit would impact as much as it has, the only downside is that I’m not getting much sleep at night now as I’m up all night watching these hedgehogs.

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    Hi gtaylor

    Well done putting in hedgehog highways. That is very important for hogs as they need several gardens. The next best thing is probably to make your garden as wildlife friendly as possible – by encouraging insects – beetles, etc. which they like to eat. So wood piles, long grass areas, etc. Also by encouraging others to do likewise. Feeding is helpful to them, especially at this time of year in the run up to hibernation but is only supplementary. It’s important for them to be able to find ‘wild’ food as well.

    You say you offer water, which is good. Ideally water should be left available all day every day as you never know when a very thirsty hog may come along even in the daytime or in the winter.

    It’s great that you have made hog boxes. The more the merrier, if you have the space, as they do change nest sites. It isn’t so easy for them to find natural nesting sites these days, so a box is a good alternative for somewhere they can build a nest. It’s great that you have a tenant already!

    I know the feeling – not getting much sleep! It can become a bit addictive watching them. Many people have night cameras, but with those a lot of activity gets missed – happens just out of frame! Nothing beats watching them in real time. Preferably from inside so they there activity isn’t effected by our presence.

    Keep up the good work, good luck and happy hog watching!


    Hi Nic giving the hogs fresh water everyday, have created two log piles as I do wood turning, we already have a wild flower part to the garden for the bees, which has bee boxes, I never realised how much water they drink and can imagine dry spells create problems with dehydration, we do have trail cameras set up but as you say a lot can be missed, looking into getting a good security camera now to watch the hogs (if you know of any good products on the market let me know)

    Thanks for you kind comments

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    That’s great. Sounds as if you are doing all the right things.

    Sorry not much good at the technical cameral related stuff, but if you have a look through the forum, questions about them come up from time to time and luckily there are some people on here more knowledgable about them.

    Good luck – hope you find something suitable.


    Hi gtaylor,

    You’re right, it’s amazing how relatively small changes to one’s garden can make a massive difference to the hedgehogs. It’s great to hear they are getting some support in rural areas as well, I heard they were on the decline in rural settings which is such a shame. I imagine they love the wood chips, must be full of beetles etc.

    I know what you mean about the not much sleep. I view them in person as well, although this is becoming less comfortable as the nights get cooler. I don’t think there is any point in me getting a camera, as I have cats and no doubt I would have many many vids of the cats and then the batteries would run out. I find that if you sit very still and quiet the hedgehogs carry on their business as normal- although the regular visitors may be slightly desensitized to movement in my garden because of the cats. I’m a bit lucky with the lights though, they obviously don’t like direct lights or torches, but I have fairy lights strung up around the garden fence, which give enough ambient light for me to see a little and watch the hogs, but it’s dim and diffuse enough that the hogs don’t seem to mind it.

    It’s great to hear you have several houses for the hedgehogs, hopefully you will see more hogs staying over as they get used to the new hogboxes. It does take a little while for them to get used to things, but they get there in the end.


    Thanks Kitty878.

    We have a light on in the garden all night it’s not over bright but you can see the garden very clear where the hogs go and they don’t seem to mind, it’s not a spotlight so it’s not shining at them, my wife has the upstairs window open and talks to them as the spot we have built the hedgehog garden is close to the house and they are use to her voice now, I get lots of squirrels setting off the camera trap as they have decided to strip the tree of walnuts this year, that is why I want to get something more permanent, it is very quiet where we live and surrounded on three sides by fields, as you have said it has been documented that they are not doing well in rural areas, in my post I said that I have lived for 10 years and just spotted the odd one, I would never have thought we had 5 hedgehogs, we have a little one which has taken up residence in one of the houses and each time another hedgehog comes into the garden he runs for his house as soon as they go he pops out again, he is in and out of his house all night, he will pop out for a drink, go back in for an hour, then pops out again for some food and then back in, this continues all night until 4am, great fun to watch these hedgehogs

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