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Not seen any young yet??

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Not seen any young yet??

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    As usual from me an odd question, sorry. I haven’t seen any sight of young yet – now it is 1st August. Only realised these beautiful creatures were visiting my little garden last November so not even a full year of experience of hedgehog behaviour yet !!
    Built a couple of houses in the winter and am trying to provide a beneficial space for them then.
    I have hedgehog visitors every evening for the water and supplementary food I put out, but reading other posts here I seem bereft of any litters so far.
    I have a small but hopefully wildlife friendly garden (small pond, wildflowers, shrubby areas and to others maybe a bit untidy).
    Now August is here I feel I need to tidy up, clear the under and overgrowth a bit and cut down the longer grasses. I’m posting to ask others if this is wrong or maybe risky? I am concerned of disturbing any wildlife here so how do others go about it? When is a good, safe time to cut back in your garden? I would be glad of advice. Thanks so much.

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    Hi daffydill

    Don’t worry about not seeing any young. Not all of us are lucky enough to have hoglets visiting every year. I haven’t seen any very young ones here for a couple of years, but in the past, one year there were 12! Although some of them late ones. When they are very small they are more likely to spend a bit of time in a smaller area getting to know their surroundings before gradually widening their ranges.

    With regard to clearing up, you will almost certainly disturb some sort of wildlife or other – i.e. insects, amphibians, etc. If something has to be cleared then it’s more a question of trying to do it at a time and with the minimum disturbance. Realistically things do need to be cleared to some extent at some time. The picture of a complete jungle of a garden isn’t necessarily the best for diversity. Hogs for instance do seem to like to have an area of fairly short grass to forage on as well as thicker areas to nest in, etc. So it’s about trying to have areas of different type of habitat. So if there are some areas that you are able to leave that might be good.

    Personally I think it’s a bit too early to be cutting wild flower areas, I normally leave mine until the Autumn. It’s still only Summer, even though at the moment it might not always seem like it! But I do tend to tweak it a bit – i.e. take the tops of the longer grasses and maybe cut back a plant which is going a bit mad and taking over. But the plants need to set seed.

    My wild flower area isn’t enormous, so I try to collect as much as the seed as I can before cutting anything. Then because I know that frogs, slow worms, etc. can be hiding in the grass – even less visible than a hog – when the time comes, I tend to clear the area by hand. So pulling the grasses – I always think of it being like an animal grazing – and cutting any plants down with secateurs. But that way I can see what’s there and I have often come across frogs in the past. (Try to leave a bit of long vegetation so they have somewhere to go). But I can also leave certain plants not cut so low.

    I know a lot of people would probably use a strimmer on such an area, but I have seen what terrible injuries they can cause to hedgehogs and then there are the frogs, etc. But if anyone is using a strimmer the area should be carefully checked beforehand to make sure there are no hogs hiding in the grass. Then the initial cut can be made to about a foot high, so that it’s easier to see any hogs, etc. before cutting lower.

    There is the in between method of using shears, but even those could kill or injure wildlife.

    But check carefully before clearing is the important thing.

    There is some information here from BHPS:


    Hello I haven’t seen our little hedgehog now for a week, I have also noticed the big one (Henry) has come out twice this week about 9.25pm>Should I worry if a cat comes into our garden would they disturb the hoggies? Some dogfood was left in house, which I took out Thank you


    Hello Wren. It has been a very quiet week on my terrace too this week. I did see 3 hedgehogs at the same time a week ago. One seemed to rush in, eat a bit from every dish very quickly then rush off again! But since then it has been very quiet and I have found the dog food has been left uneaten quite a few nights. I’m tempted to just put out biscuits but don’t want to deprive them.
    I do still see ‘little girlie’ a regular who arrives early and seems to enjoy a quiet bowl of biscuits away from others, though I’m still concerned about her size.
    I was wondering if maybe females are raising young so not appearing? I have no close neighbours here that may be putting out food.
    Like you I probably worry too much !


    Thank you Daffydil, I will put a few hog biscuits out, hopefully they are about just the bigger one seems to have changed his time.


    Wren23, cats don’t usually bother hogs. My cats stare at the hogs and follow them around the garden, but the hogs completely ignore them, apart from once when one actually nudged my enormous tabby out the way!

    Daffydill, I understand the concern about clearing parts of the garden. I must admit that I always thought people that accidentally disturbed hedgehog nests must be complete idiots, until I saw babies just outside a wild area I had been meaning to pull up for ages. I had absolutely no idea they were there, I had just the day before been building a hedgehog house next to this wild area, I must have been all but standing on the nest! They can be incredibly well-hidden, even after I knew there was a nest there I couldn’t see how there was room for it, the whole area was less than a metre square.

    I also know what you mean about the small ones. One of the babies born in that nest is still visiting regularly, and despite all the food I’m putting out she seems to be growing only very slowly! It’s frustrating when you want them to get big and strong ready for the winter. Still, plenty of time yet hopefully.


    Thank you for the advice Kitty878 i have, seen our residential one the last 3 nights now, But not the smaller one, I hope she may have hoglets?


    It’s possible it may have babies, but it may just be spending time on another part of its range. Have to wait and see I guess. Hope you see them soon x

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