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Worried my little friend has moved on

Home Forums Hedgehog signs and sightings Worried my little friend has moved on

Viewing 8 posts - 1 through 8 (of 8 total)
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    We’ve had a hedgehog visiting our garden regular as clockwork for the last few weeks.
    First of all he was eating seed that had fallen from the bird feeder. So, I bought him some Spike’s hedgehog food and started putting that out every evening for him along with fresh water.
    He would eat some of it but preferred the fallen sunflower hearts.
    So, I started putting small amounts of sunflower hearts and mealworms in a dish for him as well as his proper hedgehog food.
    Then, a couple of days ago, I was informed that mealworms and sunflower hearts can cause problems with their bones and should only be given in small amounts now and again.
    So, last night I didn’t give him any mealworms or sunflower hearts, just his proper hedgehog food. I watched him for a while and he didn’t seem very interested in the hedgehog food and wandered off. Most of the food was still left in his dish this morning, which is unusual as it’s usually always gone by morning.
    Today I bought him some cat food, as I thought he might prefer that. I got it all ready for him this evening and waited for him to appear but he hasn’t shown up. He usually emerges from behind our shed but this is the first evening in weeks that he hasn’t appeared. I’m worried that he has decided to move on elsewhere because he didn’t like the food I left for him.
    Is it normal behaviour for them to not turn up sometimes even if they’ve been visiting regularly? Or do you think he may be gone for good? I’ll be so upset if he doesn’t come back. I’ve loved seeing him every evening.


    They do sometimes disappear for no apparent reason but it’s highly unlikely that he just got the hump about the menu and moved out because of it. They can get addicted to the wrong foods like mealworms and sunflower hearts and need to be weened off them but if there’s Spikes out there and they’re hungry they will eat it quite happily so keep putting it out.

    They can be unpredictable at this time of year due to the very short nights and also females looking after ankle-biters at home and hunting at strange times so don’t worry, he’s probably still about somewhere. They can seem to vanish for weeks then come back with a vengeance so keep at it with food/water.

    Have a check around for fresh hedgehog poo each morning? That’s the best way to gauge activity.


    Thanks William,
    That’s made me feel a bit better and has given me some hope that he will return.
    His hedgehog food was all gone this morning, so I’m hoping it was Hoggy that ate it during the night.
    Do you know if other animals, like cats, foxes or birds, will eat Spike’s food?
    I am going to attempt to make a feeding station for him.


    Only one of my local thieving git cat things will touch Spikes and I also have one girlie blackbird that occasionally nicks a single lump of it but if it’s all gone then there’s a good chance it’s radicalised hegehogs! A proper feeding station is a jolly good idea and on nights like tonight the food will stay dry.


    Hello again,

    Just an update…
    I made a hedgehog feeding station and am pleased to say my little Hoggy has been visiting it during the night. I bought a trail camera, which arrived yesterday, and I used it for the first time last night. I was over the moon this morning to see footage of Hoggy going in and out of the feeding station at various times throughout the night. 🙂


    Hi, I have had a hedgehog living in a house I got for it for the last few months, but four nights ago it moved out. I noticed the hay I had put in for bedding wasn’t strewed around the door of the house like normal. Anyway, on investigation I found no one at home. Just wondering if it will return but maybe another one will move in? Is it usual for them to vacate a house they have been living in for months?

    Avatar photo

    Hi ElsieD

    Yes, it’s quite normal for hogs to move ‘house’. Especially in the Summer. If they stay too long in one place the parasites would build up. Females obviouosly tend to stay longer, because of hoglet duties. Another hog might use the box, but if you are absolutely certain that no-one is in residence (i.e. for a few days), then I would be inclined to clear the hay out and dispose of it and use boiling water to get rid of any parasite eggs which may be present – that is if it is made of suitable material to use boiling water. Otherwise just give it a good clean, paying particular attention to areas where eggs may be hiding, but don’t use chemicals.

    Maybe put a tiny bit of fresh hay inside to give them the idea, but leave other nesting material nearby, so that they can take it in if they want to.

    Occasionally I have hogs who decide to spend the day in one of my feed boxes (probably males) if they take any bedding in, it’s usually quite small amounts, at this time of year. They usually only stay a day or two and then move on again.


    Thank you Nic, actually I just asked the question about old bedding in one of the other forums but now see you have answered my query. I will do that. I have plenty of fresh hay so will clean out and renew some of it. It is good to know that “our” hog is probably alive and well somewhere else.

    We had a pair out in the garden the other night making those grunting sounds, so a bit of courting going on I think. Then saw another one at 4.30am feeding so not sure just how many we have visiting us at present. Love to see them.

    Hopefully we will have another resident one in due course.
    Cheers Elsie.

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