Recent arrival (well, probably been here longer)
16th August 2018 at 8:50 am #11366
Spotted some evidence last year and much evidence this year dotted around the garden. Now have a trail camera and captured at least two individuals on numerous occasions. Bought a house from the RSPB shop and food, house has been entered over the last few nights eating the food and this am there is one in residence. On the bowl I think, just like a dragon on its gold. I little spiky one.
It was raining a lot last night and food in the feeders is not that disturbed, other nights recently they have really gone to town on it, and other nights they ignore it rooting around the garden. One film clip of hedgehog hightailing it for the cover of rhubarb in a downpour.
Two entrances, one cut in gate and fence, the gate was mainly for an elderly puss to get about but it serves others as well now. Fence entry shows signs of use.
This leads to a few questions. One house may not be enough? Would the hedgehog overnight, sort of a hog hotel or is this for keeps? No pesticides are used, I like to eat what I grow.16th August 2018 at 2:31 pm #11370
Really pleased to hear that you have hogs there and are enjoying their visits. Sounds as if you have well and truly got the ‘bug’ already! Love the thought of a hog rushing to shelter from the rain under the rhubarb! It’s brilliant that you have holes in fence and gate.
The number of hog houses you have is really down to personal choice and how many good locations you have to site them. Generally somewhere fairly quiet and amongst or near plenty of ‘cover’ is good. They wouldn’t normally stay in a box for keeps. Very sensible, if you think about it, as it would soon become infested with parasites such as fleas and ticks.
They actually use boxes in all sorts of different ways. Some use them for overday stays and others will use them for hibernation, etc. I had two hogs here who, during the hot weather, kept taking it in turns to spend the day in a box I had been using to put food in. They normally make a more substantial nest for hibernation, for more insulation. In the Summer the males, in particular, can change sleeping places fairly frequently.
You might like to read:
Although it recommends cleaning out in the Spring and Autumn, if a hog has been using one of my boxes just for a short stay – and I am absolutely certain it has vacated – I sometimes clear them out in between, to minimise parasites. You need to be really careful, though, not to disturb a nesting female as they can desert or kill their babies. It’s best to clean the boxes out with boiling water to kill any eggs which may have got into the cracks.
You might like to put a small amount of ‘bedding’ in to start them off, but many hogs are very fussy about what they use and some may even empty out what you put in! Leave some more suitable materials nearby. Some people leave a bit of hay, but I have seen them using dried leaves, long grasses, mosses and even some green plant material which they ‘picked’ for themselves. I remember someone on the forum saying they had added some herbs to the nest they made there!
Good luck. Hope you continue to enjoy the hogs’ antics!16th August 2018 at 3:22 pm #11372
Thanks for the info. I was concerned that keeping it clean is important and how to achieve that.
I had used a sheet or two of newspaper and packing paper cut into thin strips. Will bag it and replace when the opportunity presents depending on inspection as allowed by the tenant. Little darling has managed to attach some poo to the side wall of the entrance. That was not there this am.
Hopefully camera is better sited now and can get a good idea of comings and goings but has been off in the daytime. Now back on just in case.
Very wet last night, previous dry nights has shown we have at least two coming in for food.17th August 2018 at 4:47 pm #11374
the poo antics are quite common in hedgehogs – they do use it to communicate with us and other hogs and creatures. Poo in empty food bowls and full water bowls – up the side of feeding houses and entrances to sleeping quarters. You will find yourself cleaning it up fairly routinely if you have one that messages in this way. Its all part of the fun!18th August 2018 at 10:33 am #11385
Ah, I see. Hedgehog twitter. Thanks.
Not much this morning but food has been ate.
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