Friday, 16 October 2009

Home Alone II

Where have all the hedgehogs gone? We had another very quiet night last night.

The only visitor to stay during the day was again little Indy in 9f at the front. He spent the day in 9f (left) as we can see from this video of him emerging for his first meal of the night. We'd put some extra straw in the entrance in case he felt cold, and he gives it a good sniffing.

From this compilation of his appearances over the next couple of hours he can be seen using both 9f (left) and 9f (right), sometimes just transferring from one to the other. We are amazed at how quickly he worked out he had two nest boxes to choose from, and how he still seems to like using both.

We had a couple more "transients" and only Alfie of the regulars showed up. He came into the garden via the alley and the ATM and went into 9b for a snooze.

An hour or so later he got up, but changed his mind and went back for another nap.

Another hour later he got up, had a snack and went into 9c for another nap:

And another hour later he got up, had a longer meal

and then went up for a snack by 9a, before leaving the garden.

We had a couple of visits to the lawn feeder later on, one of whom was Alfie, and that was all. It looks as if the hedgehogs have started hibernating already - this seems to be earlier than last year, but we'll have to look back to see when it was. We're surprised that they have all moved out of the patio, since Nightshift was hibernating in 9b last year for about a month up to the cold snap we had in early December. She got up in the middle of the night on 10th December. We do hope they have all put on enough weight to get them through the winter, and that they have managed to find enough suitable nesting sites - we think there were at least 8 hedgehogs visiting the garden, so that must put nesting sites at a premium.

If we see any hedgehogs over the weekend we may try and weigh them to see how they are doing, just to make sure they are in with a good chance.


  1. Nice to see you still have some activity. Haven't seen a Hedgehog here for about a fortnight now. Cold winds yesterday so hope the locals are tucked up cosy somewhere.

    BTW I loved the speeded up video you did a few posts ago.

  2. Thanks John. We do not know how much longer they will be about as the activity seems to be diminishing daily. We are so delighted though that Indy has taken a liking to the nestboxes in the boiler room as that was quite an accidental discovery, but every day now, we wonder if we may have seen the last of him. Just like Honey, NightShift has been AWOL for quite some time now. We just hope they are all alright wherever they are.

  3. We still seem to have our guests visiting - had 4 at once last night - but they seem to be coming later and eating less. This seems strange when they are supposed to be getting ready for hibernation...

  4. Thanks for the comment, John. Speeding up the longer clips can be fun as they aren't so tedious, and you do get a better idea of what the hedgies are up to.

  5. You're lucky, Kevin - you seem to be the only one with lots of visitors. Are they still quite small? We always felt Alfie looked very small, although he does seem to have put a spurt on now, and he looks quite large, particularly when you compare him with the earlier videos. He may still feel he's not ready, which is why he's still around.

  6. I'm obviously no judge of size! My wife and I both decided that the hoggie eating alone tonight looked rather smaller than our other visitors. Mindful of the 600g recommendation, I grabbed my gardening gloves and some scales and uplifted him. He weighed 906g!!!

    Perhaps living a bit further south, they stay out later. I rescued one a few miles from here from a road one night in early November last year, so I thought we might have company for a little longer.

  7. Hi Kevin, regarding judging size - we're far from experts as well. The thing is their size can be so misleading, appearing quite big one minute and then appearing very small the next.

    We are really delighted to hear your hedgie had such a good weight. 906g - wow! Sounds like s/he really likes your hedgie food and also that s/he has spread the word around as well as it sounds like you have a very satisfied hedgie community there.

    Did the little one you rescued last year overwinter with you ?

  8. Relieved to hear you also find their sizes misleading - I thought it was just my eyes...

    Hope I keep seeing "our" hedgies a while longer - just wish I had sorted some homes out earlier in the year. Mind you it's only since late August that I have seen them so regularly (which must be about the time started using the "magic" food).

    I was concerned that my "rescued" one last year had been clipped by a car. Kept him / her overnight (and had to deal with an escape in the morning but that's another story), and took it to the vet in the village first thing. Given a clean bill of health (now know how to uncurl one) and told to release it back near where it came from with a tin of cat food.