Hibernating Hedgehogs

It’s coming up to that time of year when hedgehogs are contemplating hibernation. This generally commences in October and continues until March or April, depending on the weather.

During this time the hedgehog’s metabolic rate, cardiovascular system and respiratory rate slow right down to the minimum level to conserve energy. They will be curled up and when touched (not recommended) will bristle. During hibernation, the hedgehog will live off its fat reserves and it is therefore important that it has reached a minimum weight of 600g prior to the start of hibernation to aid survival.

Rachel Harries, who is in the Wiggly office on a temporary assignment, is particularly interested in hedgehog welfare. This is what Rachel had to say,

“My mum found three under-weight hoglets in the garden last year, who weren't big enough to go into hibernation. She took them to Maureen Webb who is a British Hedgehog Preservation Society carer near Ross-on-Wye to be looked after for the winter. Then in the spring she was able to re-release them in my mum’s garden.”

To find out more about information about all things hedgehog take a look at the British Hedgehog Preservation Society web site.

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