Preferred hibernation sites – any radio tracking study?
11th February 2018 at 10:12 am #8625
I have been looking for any study where hedgehogs have been radio tracked in the summer with photos taken of the hibernation sites chosen. Have searched on Google scholar for science papers.
It would be very interesting to get to now how many will stay in gardens if they can choose forrest. How many will choose dense bushes, man made mounds of leaves, or piles of branches? Will they prefer to hibernate under dense conifer trees with possibility to gather leaves fallen from nearby leaf trees.
I have read somewhere that they tend to move from gardens to forrests to hibernate.
If You haven’t seen such a study but have seen them hibernate or have otherwise information that can help to ease hibernation, please tell me.
I tried a bit late in the autumn to make a place for hedgehog to hibernate in a wood here. It’s not occupied. Maybe it will be used the coming summer or winter.
Something that is missing for wildlife in the closest woods is differences in elevation for animals to dig into and stay dry.
Where I live in sweden we have had very many hedgehogs the two latest years as well as maybe 10-15 years ago.11th February 2018 at 6:37 pm #8629
The only thing that comes to mind is that referred to in Pat Morris’s ‘Hedgehogs’ book – in the Chapter ‘Winter Nesting’. ‘ ….. studied hedgehogs in a West London park for six winters, recording when and where the nests (hibernacula) were built, how often they were used and how long they lasted …. ‘ etc.
Regarding the place you made for nesting. Sometimes it takes a bit of time before they use a place. I had one of my boxes for at least two years before a young hedgehogs decided to make a nest in it this winter.
There was a study about hedgehog boxes done last year, and I believe the results are due out in the Spring.
One of the problems about hedgehogs and research, as I understand it, is funding, so that there are loads of things it would be nice to have research about, but due to low funding they have to be very carefully chosen.11th February 2018 at 9:13 pm #8633
I will look for it. Found a Youtube clip and some other interesting things.
Think You are right about funding. There is a research facility nearby. They are radio tracking “huntable” animals. That is probably an example of what you say.23rd February 2018 at 11:27 pm #8709
My husband made some rough log cabins for summer nesting sites thinking they would be less stuffy/humid than the hedgehog houses we have. One hedgehog looked a bit hot and bothered in the the hedgehog house which it was using as a nest in the summer (during extremely hot weather). However the resident hog in our garden loves the log cabins and uses those and spurns the hedgehog houses. All he does is steal the hay from the hedgehog houses and puts it in the DIY log cabin. He has built a wall of vegetation in front of the log cabin which he has to climb over to get in. Hope this information is useful to you.
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