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Mark56

Hello everyone,

I thought I'd make another thread, as the other had become longer than expected after all the interest from your wonderful gardening selves. 

I've recently spoken to my local rescue manager, Gill, who has come across research suggesting excess amounts of mealworms, sunflower hearts & crushed peanuts are rotting the hogs teeth. Instead, a meat flavoured cat or dog biscuit is recommended, as this helps condition them. Mealworms can be used as an occasional treat but not a staple of their diet. 

Hedgehog feeding stations are ideal to keep cats and foxes away, follow the steps in the Youtube video below (not so sure on the music taste ) and face it towards a shed/garage/wall, with a small enough gap for the hog but nothing else. A brick on top will also help. 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ln33mU2vvRY

We should be expecting them to wake earlier this year, especially in the South due to the milder weather. Typically it's anywhere between March and April. It's the perfect time to make food available, open up hedgehog high ways in your fences & leave long grass/wood piles for beetles/heaps of garden material for nesting. 

I know Tetley and many others of you on here are knowledgeable, so please don't be afraid to ask any of us questions  they need all the help they can get at the moment & are a gardeners best friend. 

Last edited: 20 February 2017 21:33:04

Not knoledgeable but will lap up info here 

so, a few dog biscuits then?  Now?

Thanks for the info Mark. I have to confess that our hogs are mealworm fiends. I'll try to encourage them onto a health food regime. They do eat some of the chicken flavoured kitten biscuits, but won't touch sunflower seeds with a bargepole. I really endorse the hole in the fence recommendation and last year I also made a feeding station out of a plastic storage box (£3 from Wilko). Before that there was never a hog in our garden (or at least we never saw one), now it's hedgie-city. Ours had 2 litters last year (if that's the right term), the second one a bit late in the year. I found a little hoglet under our bird feeder in the middle of the day at the end of November. She's been putting her feet up for the winter at the rescue centre and will come back to us in a month or two. The big thing they all seem to want is water, so please could people leave a bowl of water out for them along with any food (and maybe a toothbrush next to it).

I feel very guilty about being rabbit fenced.  

Mark56
Verdun says:

Not knoledgeable but will lap up info here 

so, a few dog biscuits then?  Now?

See original post

 Yep! Now onwards would be perfect, with a shallow bowl of water as they are quite drying. Hogs will be waking up thin and hungry.

Last edited: 21 February 2017 08:36:20

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Mark56
paul_in_surrey says:

Thanks for the info Mark. I have to confess that our hogs are mealworm fiends. I'll try to encourage them onto a health food regime. They do eat some of the chicken flavoured kitten biscuits, but won't touch sunflower seeds with a bargepole. I really endorse the hole in the fence recommendation and last year I also made a feeding station out of a plastic storage box (£3 from Wilko). Before that there was never a hog in our garden (or at least we never saw one), now it's hedgie-city. Ours had 2 litters last year (if that's the right term), the second one a bit late in the year. I found a little hoglet under our bird feeder in the middle of the day at the end of November. She's been putting her feet up for the winter at the rescue centre and will come back to us in a month or two. The big thing they all seem to want is water, so please could people leave a bowl of water out for them along with any food (and maybe a toothbrush next to it).

See original post

Paul it's fantastic that you've gone to the effort of helping and have done everything right! It's all to common for underweight autumn juveniles to be appearing, as the milder weather encourages a second litter a year (sometimes even three!) and they can't stock up in time. Lots of rescues this year were overrun and some volunteers had to overwinter them from a hutch in their garages! You did the right thing  hopefully you will get him back this Spring, as they like to release to familiar surroundings etc.

The only acceptable reason for a hog to be out in the day is if it's a wash-out or nests have been disturbed but they will be fast and have a clear route to aim for (they can reach 5mph!). Wandering dazed sets the alarm bells ringing. 

Last edited: 21 February 2017 08:45:16

Mark56
a1154 says:

I feel very guilty about being rabbit fenced.  

See original post

 It's sometimes hard to find a compromise between nature and practicality. I'm sure there's other ways you contribute  do you have a front garden? 

Last edited: 21 February 2017 08:43:30

Thanks I have watched the video and will give it a go. Have some spare storage boxes after we had house rewired and puts things away to prevent dust. I have recently seen a hedgehog in the garden and was very excited as I did not think we had hedgehogs. My only question is does putting this food out attract mice and rats. I know we have a mouse which I do not mind and have seen rats in the past which I do not want.

I dont have anything not rabbit fenced, though i could leave something just outside the gate, or over the road there is a bit of land ive seen hogs there before. 

How do you know its benefitting hogs and not feeding some cat or fox? 

madpenguin

My hedgehogs returned 2 nights ago.The trail cam picked up 2 and there is possibly a third.So all happy here!

I feed mine in a feeding station with a mixture of Go-Cat,sunflower seeds,whole peanuts,dried mealworms and dried fruit.A bowl of water is also provided.Been doing it now for 9 years.

I recognize one of the hedgehogs and know that it is the third year in a row that it has visited!

Mark56
a1154 says:

I dont have anything not rabbit fenced, though i could leave something just outside the gate, or over the road there is a bit of land ive seen hogs there before. 

How do you know its benefitting hogs and not feeding some cat or fox? 

See original post

That's a perfect idea if you know hogs are around. You could use a hedgehog feeding station although slightly more difficult there - here's the link from the first post. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ln33mU2vvRY

Last edited: 21 February 2017 09:40:10

Mark56
madpenguin says:

My hedgehogs returned 2 nights ago.The trail cam picked up 2 and there is possibly a third.So all happy here!

I feed mine in a feeding station with a mixture of Go-Cat,sunflower seeds,whole peanuts,dried mealworms and dried fruit.A bowl of water is also provided.Been doing it now for 9 years.

I recognize one of the hedgehogs and know that it is the third year in a row that it has visited!

See original post

Ahhh that is wonderful madpenguin! My nightcam was one of my biggest buys, absolutely fascinates me. Time to get it out for the Spring now  No doubt you will have babies around June/July 

a1154 says:

I dont have anything not rabbit fenced, though i could leave something just outside the gate, or over the road there is a bit of land ive seen hogs there before. 

How do you know its benefitting hogs and not feeding some cat or fox? 

See original post

I think putting food under a low cover stops the foxes getting at it. Some people just use a paving slab on a couple of bricks at each corner. Cats struggle with narrow 90 degree turns, which is why if you look at any of the hedgehog houses at the garden centre they will generally have a few tight turns to get in. Having said that I spent a long evening last year being outwitted by next door's cat before getting a working layout of recycle bins and plant pots.

Just a thought, but if your local hogs are surviving quite well on the other side of the road it may be better to help them over there rather than encouraging them to cross the road. Depends how busy the road is of course. Ours cross the road to get to us, but they then go around 4 or 5 gardens each night before heading home.

Ah its pretty rural here. I like the box. Im going to ask the neighbours if they see hogs and hopefully set this up as a collaboration. 

What an inspiring thread.  Biscuits have gone........difficult to say when but I keep nipping outside to look.  I assume they are creatures of habit...time?   Lovely if they call at regular times 

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Two questions.

First by leaving food out are you missing out on the hogs eating the slugs and snails?

Second can you tell me the make of the night cam, I like the sound of that?

Mark56

.

Last edited: 22 February 2017 14:56:33

Mark56
a1154 - Great idea, as hogs visit up to 10-20 different gardens a night if able. 
Verdun - Thank you! That's brill news, did you use a feeding station? Yes, hedgehogs are creatures of habit emerging just after dusk and retreating just before dawn  
Richard - Hello Richard, slugs & snails make up about 5% of a hogs diet and as they are emerging earlier due to the warmer weather, food sources aren't always up to speed. Sure thing, mine is a Bushnell Trophy Cam, I just plug the SD card into my laptop (like you do for pictures with cameras) and there it is after setting up. 

Last edited: 22 February 2017 14:56:51

Hostafan1

These are sold as traps, but if you block the door open, it keeps cats and foxes out. 

Mark56

Nice work Hosta