Hedgehogs are adorable creatures highly welcome in the gardens. There is something about their pointy snouts and concave faces with their constant scurrying to and fro. Most gardeners know the significance of hedgehogs in their gardens. Hence, are they good for your garden or should you get rid of them now?
One of the main and basic reasons why gardens ought to have hedgehogs is that these creatures enjoy slugs for their daily menu. This is a great upside for gardeners who want to maintain their productivity and get rid of those pesky slugs.
There are basic things to remember and understand about these spikey and tiny creatures which curl up into petite balls when threatened.
Important Facts about Hedgehogs
- Hedgehogs are nocturnal creatures. They have very good hearing and smell to compensate for their poor eyesight.
- Hedgehogs hibernate during mid-October and they actually lose a third of their actual body weight during hibernation. Their body temperature, as well as their heart rate, also slows down when they hibernate.
- Unfortunately, a major percentage of young hedgehogs do not survive their first hibernation.
- Hedgehogs become independent from their mothers when they reach the age of six to seven weeks.
- Hedgehogs could also swim and climb.
Hedgehogs and their role in nature
There is a widely distributed population of hedgehogs in the UK. Hedgehogs usually find their natural habitat in the wild. However, there are successful urban habitats for these mammals as they find refuge in cemeteries, wastelands, and gardens. Although hedgehogs survive in the wild and urban settings, there are specific places they do not like. This includes wetlands, uplands, and areas that are covered by pines.
Aside from eating slugs, there are other uninvited guests in your gardens which hedgehogs enjoy for their meal. They also eat caterpillars, beetles, worms, and other invertebrates. There are also options for gardeners if they want to feed their hedgehogs without depending on nature. For instance, there are available meat-based pet foods great for hedgehogs. Cat biscuits are also good for them. Other options for feeding hedgehogs include cooked potatoes, raisins, and chopped fruits.
Hedgehogs in your garden
A garden is an ideal place for hedgehogs to make nests and shelter or hibernate. Hedgehogs are usually found under garden sheds or piles of logs. You could search the compost heaps or piles of leaves and find them in their cozy sanctuary. They use long grass patches where they could bask or rest during the day. At night time, they could use your garden for foraging grounds.