25th March 2020 at 4:04 pm #21608
After a period of several months with no visiting Hedgehogs, we are now getting nightly visits again to dine at the hedgehog Café on the lawn. Last night we noted on our camera that they visited six separate times over a five hr period. Two had white markings on their backs. Is anyone in the Papplewick Lane / Copeland Rd area of Hucknall also keeping tabs on them ??
Gardenwatcher25th March 2020 at 10:12 pm #21627
Sorry I don’t live there, but it’s lovely to hear that there are hogs back. Bear in mind that hogs can travel up to 2 miles in a night, so it might be someone a bit further afield who has done the marking.
It’s possible to identify hedgehogs by their natural markings, so that there is no need to artificually mark them. I wrote some tips to help with identifying by natural markings, a while ago, which you might be interested in.
Good luck and happy hog watching.26th March 2020 at 5:13 pm #21648
I support Nic on this. Several of ‘my’ hogs have markings of some sort or other, usually black or white. They are not natural and hence someone is marking them, but I have no idea who, so unable to take any action. Indeed its not clear what action could be taken anyway as I have no ownership over our visitors anyway. I don’t like it but would accept it does make identification easier when you have several visitors on a regular basis.27th March 2020 at 10:01 am #21659
You need to be a bit careful relying on artificial markings to identify hogs. I have seen hogs which have seemingly had marks on top of other marks (possibly by another person) and also individual hogs which have been re-marked in a different pattern to the original. So the only safe way to be sure it’s the same hog is to learn to recognise them by their natural markings.
Of course artificial markings can make that a bit more difficult. For instance a hog may suddenly turn up with half a dark face which it has, presumably, got from biffing another hog. I hope, at least, that no-one is purposely putting artificial marks on any hedgehogs’ face.
But it also has the effect of seeing the hog as the marks on it, rather than as the hog itself – it draws attention away from their natural markings which are part of the intrinsic nature of the hedgehog.
As said many times previously, I see no need to artificially mark hedgehogs. They have their natural markings, but if anyone does mark hogs, it should only ever be on the tips of a very few spines, kept well away from face and the skirt and ensuring that it doesn’t reach the skin. Substance on the face could cause eye problems. Substance on the skirt area is more likely to be ingested, which isn’t going to do the hog any good. Hogs often have slightly different colouring on their skirts (a bit like a hog barcode!) but I have often seen artificial marks on the skirt, and skirt band. Pointless, when there is already natural marking there. We only need to look.
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