When do Hedgehogs Have Babies?

Baby hedgehogs, called Hoglets, are born in the UK in June and July. A second litter may be born in September or October. They are usually 4 or 5 hoglets in a litter. Newborn hoglets are blind and tiny, weighing just 25 grams. When they are born, baby hedgehogs have no visible spines.

Baby Hedgehogs – When, Where and How?

Hedgehog numbers in the UK are declining rapidly. So the sight of a mother leading a little procession of baby hogs out on their first foraging trip is a delight for anyone interested in wildlife.

It signals the start of a new generation and gives new hope for the future of the species.

But being a baby hedgehog is a risky business. Maybe only half of the hedgehogs born in the UK make it to maturity.

The better we understand hedgehog mating and hoglet-rearing, the more we can help our local hoglets make it through to healthy adulthood.

So in this article, we are going to cover:

  • the hedgehog mating season.
  • pregnancy and birth.
  • hoglet development and family life.
  • dangers for baby hedgehogs.
  • how to help a baby hedgehog.

So read on for all you need to know about this most exciting time in the hedgehog year.

When are Baby Hedgehogs Born?

The Hedgehog Mating Season.

Before we start thinking about when hoglets are born, we need to go back a step and take a look at when, and how, they are made.

Hedgehogs come out of hibernation in March or April and quickly start the process of fattening up for the mating season.

Mating starts in April and can go on until September. The main activity though takes place in May and June.

It’s a noisy business, and if you have hogs in your garden, this is undoubtedly a time when you will know they are around, even if you don’t see them.

The courtship ritual isn’t all that romantic.

The birth of each new hoglet is a great sign of hope for the whole hedgehog species. Click To Tweet

The male hog finds a female and starts to circle round her. She will give him the cold shoulder, turning her side to him so he can’t approach. Whilst at the same time putting him off with plenty of grunting and snorting noises.

All this noise quite often attracts the attention of other males who may then approach to try their luck. If this happens the two males will have a bit of a tussle, head butting and jostling each other. Sometimes one or other wins and goes back to the female.

Other times the female gets bored and wanders off, leaving the males to it!

The mating dance can go on for hours but eventually ends quite suddenly, either with one of the hogs running off or when mating starts.

Mating for hedgehogs is an extremely prickly business – think sharp spines meeting soft underbelly – ouch!

So mating can only happen with the full cooperation of both hogs. The female must lie flat to the ground arching her head and shoulders, so she almost looks like she’s doing yoga.

This way her spines lie flat and the male can safely climb on board, grasping the spines between her shoulder blades with his teeth and using his paws to get a better grip.

At any time during the process, the female can change her position so she “bristles” and throws the male off.

Even after all this mating is not guaranteed to lead to pregnancy

So hedgehogs do lots of mating, with lots of different partners just to be sure. Two a night is not unusual, and a hog may have ten or 12 different partners during the mating season according to Pat Morris in his great book “Hedgehogs”.

Hedgehogs are generally solitary creatures, and mating doesn’t change this. After the act, there seems to be no pair bond formed at all. The male goes on his way and takes no part in raising the litter. There is little chance he would ever recognise his offspring.

Pregnancy and Giving Birth

Female hedgehogs are usually pregnant for around 32 days before giving birth.

But pregnancy can go on for quite a bit longer. This is very unusual in mammals. It is thought that pregnancy is extended when the weather turns cold after the female becomes pregnant, pushing her back into hibernation. When this happens, the pregnancy and development of the embryo will be put “on hold” and start up again when the mother comes back out of hibernation.

During the pregnancy, the female will be kept busy building a nursery nest.

The nursery nest is similar to the hibernaculum where hedgehogs spend the winter. It’s just bigger, to allow room for the hoglets, and a bit more untidy. Where leaves are the primary building material for a hibernaculum, a nursery nest is made of all sorts of bits the hog picks up including paper and bits of rubbish. As it’s not so cold at nursing time, the hog doesn’t need to be quite as careful about making sure the nest is well insulated.

When the female gives birth she will usually produce a litter of 4 or 5 hoglets. Bigger litters do happen, but having a bigger litter seems to reduce the individual hoglets chances of making it to adulthood.

Baby Hedgehog less than 1 week old, with eyes closed and white spines.

When baby hedgehogs are born, they are tiny, just 25 grams or one ounce in weight. They are born blind.

No spines are visible when they are born – which is when you think about it is probably a very good thing for the mother.

The new-born hogs are covered in greyish skin over a layer of liquid, a bit like a water blister. This skin serves to protect the mother during birth and quickly retracts as the hoglets grow.

Hoglet Development and Family Life

Baby Hedgehogs are only with their mother for around six weeks, and in this time they must develop from tiny, blind, spineless infants into independent young hogs.

It’s a hectic time in the hedgehog’s life cycle.

During the first few hours after birth, the hoglets covering of skin retracts to reveal pure white spines, about 100 of them, with a centre parting.

Over the next few weeks the brown spines we are more used to seeing grow up through the white ones. As more and more brown spines grow, the white ones become almost invisible and will eventually be lost through moulting.

Baby hedgehogs feed on mothers milk, just like humans. The mother has two sets of five nipples. This would allow her to feed a huge litter of 10 in theory. In practice, though, she is unlikely to have enough milk to feed more than 4 or 5 hoglets properly.

The babies will start to eat solids at around three weeks. Mum will generally chew up bits of food and offer them to the hoglets in small, softened portions.

Hoglets are born with milk teeth, just like humans. They will start to get their first adult teeth at three weeks old and lose their final milk teeth at around three months.

Baby hedgehogs are born a pale pink colour, and over the first few weeks of life, fur grows, and the skin gradually darkens as the brown spines come through.

By four weeks old the hoglets will look just like miniature hedgehogs and will be ready to leave the nest with Mum to go on foraging trips. These first trips out of the nest are one of the most perilous times for hoglets.

Hoglets typically spend just two or three weeks out and about with Mother before going off on their own.

As they are mostly solitary creatures, siblings don’t tend to hang around with one another once they have left the nest. Father plays no part in the raising of the hoglets, and it’s unlikely that he would recognise his young if he met them.

Once the hoglets have gone their separate ways, the female must concentrate on eating to get her strength back up. Over the past ten weeks, she will have produced more than a kilo of hedgehogs. This is far more than her own body weight, and it’s a tremendous physical strain.

Hoglets are not sexually mature in their first year of life, so they will not mate until after hibernation.

The mother though may go on to produce a second little in late summer or early autumn. The babies she has then will become Autumn Juveniles, some of our most vulnerable hedgehogs.

Dangers for Baby Hedgehogs.

The first year of a hedgehog’s life is undoubtedly the most hazardous. It is thought that only half of all hoglets born make it to adulthood, with one in five not even making it out of the nest.

So what hazards do hoglets face?

  • Disturbed nests.  If a nest is disturbed soon after hoglets are born, the mother may abandon or even eat her young. If a nest is disturbed when the hoglets are a little older, the mother may move them to a new nest. She does this by picking each hoglet up by the scruff of the neck, with her teeth. She then carries them one by one to the new site. This is a hazardous mission.
  • Insufficient Milk. In a cool, dry summer, the mother may struggle to get enough food herself to produce the milk she needs to feed her young.
  • Predators. Badgers and to a lesser extent foxes are the only real predators adult hedgehogs face in the wild. These are of course even more of a threat for hoglets who may also be attacked and injured by dogs and cats.
  • Getting separated from Mum. If hoglets out on foraging trips with the female get separated from her too early, they are likely to lack the skills needed to survive on their own.
  • Normal Hedgehog Hazards. Once they are out and about with Mum, hoglets face all the same perils as adults, with less of the experience of dealing with them. These include roads, ponds, slug pellets, holes to fall into – the list goes on.
  • Underweight for Hibernation.  A hedgehog that goes into hibernation underweight will probably not survive. This can be a particular problem for Autumn Juveniles but in a cool, dry summer with little food around could be a problem for early season hoglets too.
  • Unhelpful Helpers.  Hoglets are delicate little creatures. It’s easy for a well-intentioned human who wants to be helpful to do the wrong thing. Read on for tips on how to help baby hedgehogs safely.

How to Help Baby Hedgehogs.

Here are our top tips on helping baby hedgehogs in your garden.

  • Do make sure plenty of food and water are left out for the mother in your feeding station.
  • Do provide a hedgehog house for use as a nesting box. Hedgehogs may struggle to find the nesting sites they need in modern, tidy gardens. A hedgehog house can provide a safe haven for raising a litter.
  • Don’t disturb the nest. We know if you think you have a litter of hoglets in your garden you are going to want to peek. Don’t do it! If you simply have to know what’s going on in your hedgehog house wait until you clean it out then fit a wildlife camera, in the meantime, leave it alone. If you disturb a nest accidentally carefully re-cover it with dry leaves, grass and twigs.
  • Do be very careful when you are cleaning up the garden. Strimmers, bonfires, spades and forks can quickly finish off a hoglet.
  • Do look out for distressed baby hedgehogs who may have lost their Mum. Very young hedgehogs make a shrill squeaking noise, a bit like a baby bird. If you find a baby hog out on its own, be prepared to step in, it will need your help.
  • Don’t ever give a baby hedgehog (or any hedgehog) cows milk. It’s very bad for them. If you are going to feed, offer kitten or puppy milk.
  • Don’t try to hand-rear a baby hedgehog yourself. They are delicate creatures and need expert support.

If you find a baby hedgehog out on its own, you will need to get it to your local hedgehog rescue. If you see one wandering hoglet, it will be worth having a look round for others. If the mother has been killed, there may be several who need your help.

Line a cardboard box with a towel. Put in a hot water bottle, (or a plastic bottle filled with warm water) wrapped in another towel. Place the hoglet inside.

Call your local hedgehog rescue straight away.

Conclusion: Baby Hedgehogs Face Huge Challenges, We Can Help Them Succeed.

British hedgehogs are in trouble and need our help.

Intensive farming, the destruction of hedgerows and the use of pesticides have led to a considerable drop in hedgehog numbers.

The birth of each new hoglet is a great sign of hope for the whole hedgehog species.

But birth is just the start of a very challenging few weeks and months for the baby hog. It will face many dangers before reaching adulthood.

Luckily you can help by providing food and shelter, making our gardens safe and looking out for babies in trouble.

For more information on how you can help hedgehogs visit:

The British Hedgehog Preservation Society.

Hedgehog Street.

And if you spot a hedgehog in trouble, you can find your local hedgehog rescue project by clicking here.

And if you have more questions on this topic we would love to hear from you, leave us a comment below.

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68 Responses

  1. I have had a hedgehog in my hedgehog house for several weeks now.I usually put a small dish of hedgehog food just inside the house which was eaten each night,lately most of the food is left .Yesterday around lunch time I saw the hog running of down the garden.last night 10pm it came back had a drink of water ignored the food but went into the house ,I watch for sometime
    But did not see it come out,could it be it has young.?

    1. Hi Grace. Yes it could have young. In this case you need to steer clear of the house for a new weeks. They do not like to be disturbed with young.
      Let us know if you have any developments!

      1. Hi I have three nest boxes in my garden ,I have hedgehog come in every night ,I cleaned the box out an put just a bit of hay in ,an I’m seeing a round shape as though they are resting,should I put more hay in ,I to put the food inside ,so should I leave it out side the box ,Ann

        1. Hi Ann, stay away from the box once there are hogs in it. You can see if hogs are in residence by placing straw or a flower by the door and see if it gets disturbed. You shouldn’t open the box to clean or check, disturbed hogs may flee and leave hoglets behind. Leave food away from the nesting box in a feeder box as is shown here and elsewhere https://homeandroost.co.uk/blog/hedgehog-feeding-station/ this shows some excellent examples that are very easy to make. Only ‘clean’ a nesting box as advised on here, once they have left after hybernation and before they return after having babies.

          1. Hi Mark
            I’m a bit confused as the 1st bullet says to leave food INSIDE the feeding station. Yet you say to leave food away, which is correct but did confuse me.
            I have 2 Hedgehog Hotels and 2 Spikes feeding stations (Spikes Bistro and Spikes Diner) different ends of garden as I thought they didn’t like food close to nest as can attract predators.
            I have at least 3 nightly visitors which more often than not rest in hotels 🦔🦔🦔

      2. Hi there, I have a hedgehog in my nest, it doesn’t seem to want to leave the nest to eat it’s food.
        The nest to me looks like a nursing nest or hibernation nest but it is too early for hibernating.
        The nest has twigs, dried grass, broken plants, bits of plastic wrappers that it has found somewhere. It’s like a massive mound of foraged garden waste.
        As it doesn’t want to leave the nest and has popped it’s head out during the day to eat, could it be a mummy hedgehog or due to have hoglets soon?

        1. Hi Georgina,

          Yes, that sounds like it could be a mother – congratulations!

          Just keep leaving food and water out for her and most importantly give her plenty of space.

          Best

          Clare

  2. We have mum and 4 hoglets running around our garden. We feed them cat food and cat biscuits and always water they are delightful julie

      1. Hi Clare,we had a hedghog and 5 babies back in may,we had to take them to a hedghog hospital,we just found out we getting them back today,do we put them back were they were born please.

        1. HI Sandy,
          I hope the release went well. Yes they should go back where they came from so long as it is a suitable site. Away from busy roads, plenty of cover and food sources etc.
          Keep us posted on how they do!
          Good Luck
          Clare

      1. The RSPB sell a device which works on some cats! Have a look on their website for cat watch deterrent. As far as I can tell, on my wildlife camera, the hogs aren’t bothered by a cat visiting. I am not sure if they could hurt a hog. Maybe someone can comment. How privileged are we?

        1. Cats are likely to come off worse in an encounter with hedgehogs. They could do damage to babies, but not very likely.

    1. Early this Sunday morning a busy hedgehog building a nest in our garden. Small mound of leaves and twigs in an Igloo shape when I looked yesterday. It / she? was very industrious and did many trips, it was daylight but early AM. Could this suggest a late litter is imminent; Any advice for a late August litter?
      I have a little video of it but not sure I can insert here.

      1. Hi Rosemary,
        Yes it does indeed suggest a late litter on the way. We’ve been busy writing a guide this week, so watch this space, will be publishing later today.
        Hoglets born in the next month or so are very likely to need some support to get them through hibernation.
        I don;t think you can share video in the comments, but we’d love to see it on our FB page!
        Best
        Clare

  3. I have had at least 3 hedgehogs in my garden this year . During April there were 2 hogs in the box for several days one much larger than the other ending with a lot of chasing and huffing and puffing I presume they were mating. And now the smaller hog has absolutely stuffed the box with plant leaves and hay. I do hope she is preparing to have young . How can I tell without disturbing her .

    1. Hi Barbara,
      It all sounds very hopeful!
      There’s no real way to tell if she’s had hoglets without disturbing her. And I’m sure you know how important it is not to do that.
      You just need to be patient. You could think about getting a little night camera if you are really keen to get a first glimpse. They start from about £40 and are motion activated. So if you set one up outside the house you should see Mum coming and going with food and get to see the hoglets when the start to venture out.
      Keep us posted!
      Clare

      1. Oh how exciting Clare, I have one smaller, scruffier hog and one much larger tidy hog living in the 3 nesting boxes in my garden. The big one has been huffing and confronting the smaller one [which backed off] recently. But last night, on camera, it caught a worm and took it into the nesting box. Could it be feeding young or just eating in bed? I have a video I will put on your FB. Would a pregnant one huff and approach another to mate. Or is it possibly not wanting it around while it has it’s young? Or something completely different? I have no idea what sex they are. Many thanks

        1. Very exciting!
          The worm carrying definitely sounds like she is feeing young in the box. they are not known for taking food away, generally eat straight away. As for the noises – not sure!
          Look forward to seeing the video!
          Best
          C

  4. Hi I have a mother and 4babies they feed well they are lovely we made a box for them but they made a nest in a black bag

  5. We’ve just taken on a new business premises and have found a huge hedgehog living next to the outhouses. She appears to have made a nest out of plastic and crisp packets. We won’t disturb it but were thinking of putting some hay there to make her feel more secure. The area is heavily built up and on a very busy road. Should we get her a wooden Hedgehog house or relocate her to our allotments at home? If we leave her where she is and get her a house, what would be the best way to introduce her to it? Or do we risk upsetting her causing her to leave? We’ll leave some food and water out for her anyway but any advice would be really appreciated! Thanks x

    1. Hey Jenny,
      How exciting!
      Now is the time that female hedgehogs will be settling down to have a second litter of hoglets. so it’s really important not to disturb her. If she is making a nursing nest she probably wouldn’t relocate to a hedgehog house at this stage. If the area where she is is a bit short on nesting materials then yes, leaving some hay or garden waste nearby could be appreciated.
      If you are worried about the location you could give your local hedgehog rescue a call and discuss it with them.
      Best of luck and keep us posted!

  6. My dog finds and (horrible) eats pink embryonic creatures that he finds under tussocks of mown grass on our local recreation ground. The creatures are about the size of the palm of a smallish adult hand. I think they may be dead already when he finds them. They have bones. I don’t get to see them in time to give more description but several people say they are small moles. There are masses of molehills on the rec but these things are nowhere near any of them. Might they be baby moles??

    1. Hi Veronica,
      I have to admit to being flummoxed by this. I don;t think they could be moles as they sound too big. The same for hedgehogs or mice, or even rats.
      No idea I’m afraid. But if you figure it out we would love to hear.

    2. This sounds like bunnies maybe? I don’t know what the right time of year is for them to have babies, but I do know they are often in clumps of what looks like mown grass lumps.

  7. I’ve had an hedgehog hibernate for some years and then this year another one suddenly appeared and today there was two in the box is this normal or could it be a Female nesting

    1. Hi Pauline,
      This is unlikely to be a hoglet, its too late for first little and a bit early for the second, and there would normally be more than one.
      It’s unusual, but not unheard of for two hogs to bed down together. Could they be spring juveniles from the same litter?

  8. Hi,
    I currently live in the Netherlands, where there is a service called the animal ambulance (dierenambulance). I called them last night for a hedgehog that likely had a traffic accident. I looked dead, but I thought I could see it breathe. The ambulance arrived and established it was a lactating female. She died in their hands within a couple minutes. They then went looking for the litter for an hour in vain.
    So here are my questions: how far from the nest does a mother forage? And how long can hoglets survive on their own? (I suppose it depends on their age, too.)
    Thanks.

    1. That’s so sad Chloe.
      And as you suspect there is no clear answer to either of your points.
      How far the mother will go to forage totally depends on the availability of food. but it could be up to half a mile.
      And again, with the hoglets, their chances of survival completely depend on how old they are. If they are a little older they will sound distress calls or even try to leave the nest themselves and look for food. If either of these things happen they have a chance of being rescued.
      All we can do is hope I think.
      Best
      Clare

  9. I have been feeding and filming an adult hedgehog for about 6 weeks starting in August and suddenly there are at least 4 babies running about in the garden and they don’t seem to realise they are supposed to be nocturnal. The mother (I assume) is still around and sleeps in the compost heap during the day. Is this normal behaviour when they first leave the nest?

    1. Hi John,
      If they are still there I would suggest you call your local hedgehog rescue straight away.
      If they were born in September they are autumn juveniles and may struggle to put on the weight they need to survive hibernation.
      If they are out in the daytime they really shouldn’t be.
      So call in the experts if they are still around.
      And keep us posted.
      These 2 articles might help:
      https://homeandroost.co.uk/blog/watch-out-for-autumn-juveniles/
      https://homeandroost.co.uk/blog/how-to-rescue-and-over-winter-a-hedgehog/
      Best of luck!
      Clare

  10. Hi Clare,
    I have cameras in my garden, and about 12 hogs coming and going, because I always ensure they have food and water in various feeding stations, some days some sleep over in one of my hog houses. I know that 1 of the ‘usuals’ is female (Olivia), which I’m sure had a litter earlier the season, and again during Aug-Sept. Four nights ago I saw on camera that Olivia kind of attacked an Autumn juvenile until the juvenile rolled up, then she moved on. I got lucky in catching the juvenile the next evening, and weighed her to see how far from a safe weight she is, and she needs some feeding (only 370g)! I put her in one of the houses, and she seems quite satisfied with this – she goes out at night, but comes back to sleep in the house for the day. What I would really like to know from you is whether the attack by Olivia can mean that she is the hoglet’s mother, or is it merely because both are female?
    Thanks for your lovely informative articles!!
    Erba

    1. Wow 12 hogs Erba! Good going!
      So, the attack. Hedgehogs aren’t territorial and only usually fight over food or mates. But personalities do vary.
      Females tend to be less aggressive than males, though pregnant females are often keen to keep others away.
      Others have observed mothers apparently attacking their juveniles. It’s thought this could be one of 2 things, either the mother trying to encourage a hoglet to go off and make his/her own way in the world. Or there is some suggestion that it could be a self defence lesson.
      Either way, the good news is that hedgehog fights rarely cause serious damage to either party.
      Best of luck with fattening up your juvenile!
      Clare

      1. Dear Clare,
        Thanks a lot for your reply! It makes it much clearer!
        It’s going well with little Vivian, she hasn’t had another fight yet, and slept over in my garden 5 of the 6 previous days – but trying out other cages every day (and night, Hehehe!) She eats in a cage, sleeps for a while, wander around for a while, then feeds at the feeding station, goes to a cage for another hour/so sleeping, and repeats again.
        I noticed lots of ticks on her, and brought her in to get rid of it, and weighed her at the same time. She picked up 41g over 4 days, and I think it is excellent, keeping in mind that she had about 10 ticks feeding off her blood for about half of the time!
        Take care!
        Erba

      2. i have been really lucky and had 2 hedgehogs feeding in the garden. i feel very priviledged. lately they havent come to feed. i hope they havent come to harm. any ideas?

  11. Clare,
    just a question out of curiosity… One of my hedgehog boars weighs very close to 1.5kg! Will it mean any challenge to him in hibernation?
    Go well!
    Erba

    1. Hi Erba,

      Wow, that’s a whopper!
      but no, it wont cause him any problems, some of the boars can get very big. He should be looking forward to a nice, cosy winter!
      Best
      Clare

  12. Hello, half an hour ago my dog was barking like mad at the bottom of the garden. I went to investigate and there was a hedgehog ! Don’t know how it got there as my garden is walled and fenced. It was hissing at my dog who was trying to nudge it. If it’s still there tomorrow my dog will carry on barking at it which will disturb my neighbours. Can it be very gently moved to my friend’s garden down the road where it would be happy and have some peace ? Thank you.

    1. Hi Nicky,
      I think moving him on to a dog-free space, if you see him again, is probably a good idea.
      Best
      Clare

  13. Dear Clare,
    A few days ago I weighed Vivian, and I very happy to report she’s now 688g! Meanwhile I found another Autumn juvenile, and the way Vivian responded to the new one, I assume they are siblings. Therefore the new one is called Sissy. 😉
    BUT: Saturday night another tiny one showed up on my cameras! I was lucky enough to catch it earlier tonight, and it is wayyyyy to light! Only 324g, with 2 FAT ticks on it! Killed the ticks and fed it in one of my cages, but when I did my rounds later, Vivian was in the cage and Tiny was gone. Then I found it in the smallest cage, at my front door (sort-of outside my garden.) What should I do? Do I just keep on putting food out for it, and pray for the best, or do I catch it, and keep it in my conservatory until it weighs more? What is the minimum weight to go into hibernation safely?
    Awaiting your reply!
    Take care,
    Erba

    1. Hi Erba,

      Not sure whereabouts in the UK you are, but down here in Gloucestershire we are having a very mild autumn. So there may be time for Tiny to fatten up on her own, just from your nightly feedings.
      A hedgehog needs to be 500gms at the very minimum to go into hibernation safely, some people say 650gms. But T
      they can put on 10 gms a day.
      Generally hedgehogs will be fine outside and wont try to hibernate until the nighttime temperature is below 5 c for a good few nights.
      So if she is still under weight when this happens then she should perhaps come into the conservatory for a while.
      At the moment though, unless you are in the far north, she should be fine outside.
      Best of Luck!
      Clare

      1. Hi Clare,
        Thanks a lot! We are in Northamptonshire, so it seems as if it will not be necessary to bring her in soon. Early morning videos show her almost running from one feeding spot to the next to eat – she was quite busy (and quite amusing to see this little ball of spines running so fast forward and back again to the food she just left a minute/3 ago)! I expect her back tonight, so I will weigh her again in a week/so, and will keep you updated.
        Take care!
        Erba

  14. Hello Clare
    We have a family if 3 little hoglets still with Mum that have been feeding in our garden.
    Our cameras picked up images if them nest building in a sheltered spot of the garden, including the little hoglets… they’re so strong and determined.
    They are normally very active and feed regularly every night but since the nest building we haven’t seen any of them.
    The little ones are only around 300g and I am concerned that they may not make it through hibernation, even with Mum still around. I really don’t want to disturb the nest as they’ve worked so hard and it looks very cosy. There hasnt been any movement since bonfire night, maybe the bangs have frightened them?
    We still put out fresh food and water just in case. Do you have any advice please?

    1. Hi Pam,

      Very sorry to hear this.

      It’s a difficult one. If they are only 300gms they are not going to survive hibernation. On the other hand if you disturb the nest and wake Mum from hibernating you compromise her chances of making it through the winter too.
      There might be a chance of going into the nest and overwintering all of them. but that’s going to be a fair be of work and you will need some specialist help.
      I would suggest you give your local hedgehog rescue a call and see what they have to say.

      Keep up posted.
      Clare

  15. Hi, I have search for an article for my hedgehog cause of death. I really wanted to know more about it because he just suddenly died. We are just playing at the afternoon and in the evening, I noticed that he’s shaking and later on, he had a foaming thing on his mouth then died. Do u know what’s the possible cause of his death? because I doubt it was because of Wobbly sysndrome which the google says. As per research it will last for 18-24months since the onset of clinical signs. But as I mentioned, my hedgehog was really fine that afternoon and suddeny died in the evening. Thank u Ms. Claire!

  16. I have been given a very smart hedgehog house which is circular with a tunnel entrance. I fed a hedgehog last Autumn so roughly know its route. When should I place the house and where?
    Should the house be on natural earth or could it be on paving and also how can I persuade the hog to go in??

    Thank you,
    Zoe

    1. Hi Zoe,

      Try to place the house in a quiet area of the garden where the hogs will not be disturbed. Point the entrance away from the prevailing wind/rain, and if you can arrange it so the house slopes slightly downwards, towards the entrance this will let any rain run out.

      I don’t think paving or earth matters, we have 2, one on each. Put it out any time. They move house during hibernation, so you might get one before they are active again.

      In terms of what to put in it, some dry leaves or grass would be good. A saucer of water nearby, and once you start to see them out and about again, even a saucer of food near the house to tempt them over.

      Good Luck!

  17. I’ve just come across your article as I’ve seen my first hedgehog of the year (I noticed the food I put out had started to be eaten a few weeks ago but no sighting). I’m looking forward to more sightings (last year I had 3 in the garden at one time and am sure saw two young-ens as well). Really hoping to see some hoglets this year and your article really helpful on that.

    Anyway just wanted to say loved the article was so interesting but also your style of writing is brilliant.

  18. A hedgehog has visited me to feed and drink every night for about 2 weeks .Now I haven’t seen him for about a week . Could he or she have gone back into hibernation due to the cold weather here in the north?

  19. We have found a hedgehog in our hedgehog house this week. It is about the size of my hand 5-6 inches long. Is this a good size? I have made a feeding station but it hasn’t been used yet? The house is on a slope and it’s hard to position the station close by.
    How can I get it to be more hog friendly?

  20. I have 3 hedgehog houses. When is the best time to clean them out? I’m sure 2 have or are being used. There are signs of hedgehogs about in my garden and the feeding stations are used.

  21. I bought a hedgehog house and have been putting food inside and leaving water outside for two regular visitors. Our camera shows them coming every night and the food is always eaten. This week I heard the commotion of mating which is all very exciting should it lead to hoglets but now can I continue to remove the roof of the house to put fresh food in and should I do anything else to help nesting? Will I need to stop putting the food inside or what else do you advise please?

    1. Hi Jayne,

      they need the food more than ever if they are mating, so I would keep going with that.

      They will probably choose a different nesting site. If you don’t have a suitable area in your garden you might think about buying or making a second hedgehog box for them to nest in.

      Good Luck and keep us posted!

      Clare

  22. Hi
    We have at least 3 hedgehogs living underneath our hay which sits on pallets. On 8th May one was collecting lots of straw and seemed to be making a nest. Last night 14th she collected another mouthful of straw. Is she replenishing her nest? Could it be another of the hedgehogs building a nest and when should I expect to see babies? Maureen

  23. We have a hedgehog that’s been sleeping in our ‘hog house’ every day for the last couple of weeks. We don’t know if it’s male or female or if perhaps it will be having young soon. We have been putting out food every night,, all of which gets eaten but on taking a peek one day I notice that he’/she is messing in the entrance area to the sleeping quarters. It’s starting to smell and with hot weather approaching is there any way that I can clean this?

  24. We had a nesting hedgehog about 2 weeks ago, then she disappeared. Today a small but fully formed hoglet appeared but seems very unsteady on his feet and has now come to a stop for the last half hour. Should I scoop him up and take him to Tiggywinkles, or leave him and see what happens.

  25. Hi. For the last 2 years I have had a resident hog (Mr Pokey). I see him scurrying across the patio most evenings in the spring & summer months. I have a house with a tunnel and partitions where I leave food and water. It’s always had straw in it, but he’s never slept or hibernated in it, merely used it as a cafe. Yesterday I lifted the roof to replace his food and water – and I was amazed to discover him all snuggled up in the straw! (He / she is still in there today) Could this mean I have a Mrs Pokey? And she’s nesting?? Reading back through previous questions on here – should I stop lifting the lid and put the food elsewhere now, and leave her alone? I have 2 greedy cats that will steal her food if it’s left outside. Thanks

  26. I had a femail hedgehog in the garden this time round she came in hedgehog home and had babies hobbits two weeks ago haven’t disturbed her she is very privately where the home is we not seen her or hired her for two days I don’t no if she’s ok or not is this normal for a famail hedgehog to not eat for days with baby hedgehogs

  27. We have a female and 4 hoglets living in our glasshouse. She’s made a nest in a 1/2 empty bag of compost that she’s added random bits like socks in (I found it by accident around 2 weeks ago). My concern is will they be too hot in there? They are in a shady corner under some shelving and there’s a broken pane (where they get in and out).

    1. Hi Rebecca,

      That’s great!

      It sounds like the nest is well shielded from the heat and has some ventilation. so they should be fine. but if it does get too hot for them she will move them.

      Enjoy!

      Clare

  28. We have had hogs in our garden since last April (2020). We built a house for them and leave proper hedgehog food and water out every night. We bought a night camera which we regularly put out so that we now have some beautiful footage of all of their rituals.
    Most recently, we have noticed one hog (female?) has made a nest in the inner most chamber of our hog house. It seems a little late for babies? Or could it be that her pregnancy was put on hold due to such a cold April and May? I am still watching her (?) movements each night and no sign of babies yet. I will continue to put out food and water but won’t disturb the nest.
    Is this likely to be a baby ready nest? It’s very neat and she’s used the hay and leaves we put into the outer chamber to make it. Or is she preparing a hibernaculum do you think? Seems a bit premature!! Thanks. Elaine

    1. Hi Elaine,

      the majority of hedgehogs do have 2 litters in a year, one in early summer and another as late as August. so she may well be nesting again.

      If she is, you need to keep an eye out for the hoglets and offer them as much food as possible in the run-up to hibernation, Hoglets from late litters, autumn juveniles, can struggle to put on the weight they need to hibernate.

      Best of Luck!
      Clare

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