September 2012 – newsletter

Hedgehogs in September

(written for Brackley HogWatch by Kay Bullen)

 The race is on to prepare for hibernation.  Female hedgehogs will be bringing on their late youngsters but they too need to build up their fat reserves to survive hibernation.  The youngsters on the other hand are small and vulnerable.  They often have problems with small internal parasites at this time of year, especially lungworms.  Adult and fat healthy youngsters can cope with a certain level of parasites but the smaller, younger and thinner ones will struggle.

 However if they are not too badly affected and can be given some extra help in the wild they may not need to be rescued and brought into care.  If you have youngsters about do consider providing them with a nest box or two.  Also those feeding stations can be a real lifesaver.  Provided they stay nocturnal and are eating well they should be OK to remain in the wild.  If you want to be extra sure you could perhaps mark them (a small dab of white emulsion paint or correction fluid on a few prickles would suffice – each one being marked in a different place) and weigh them each week.  They can put on a lot of weight in a week so gains of 50-100gms might be expected.

 If they are not thriving and particularly as the winter gets nearer then they may need to be brought into care.  However that extra help early on can enable a lot of them to remain in the wild and of course be a regular visitor to your garden.

 However if they come out in the day, appear lethargic, are not thriving, or are particularly small then they need to be brought into care and Brackley HogWatch can be contacted for more advice.  If you need to get in touch please telephone 07528 119416 or 07976 704415, as you then will receive immediate advice – the earlier a problem is caught the easier it should be to solve.

 If you have any doubts about a hedgehog do call the Brackley HogWatch. For more information about hedgehogs and making your garden safer for hedgehogs visit our web site