April 14, 2010

"Cream Puff", a rescued albino hedgehog

They say that 1 in 10,000 hedgehogs are born albino... and they struggle to survive in the wild. I have never seen one! But this is a lovely article and video on this rescued one.

Also pleased to hear this man is feeding it on cat food - which suits them best... not sure I agree with the vet quoted in the article saying to use milk - I have always believed milk causes them digestive upsets - probably safer to stick with canned cat foods... or a few biscuits, or just worms and snails.
We used to see a lot of sick hedgehogs up north. Often it was slug bait poisoning.. which is one reason I don;t use it anymore. They are also prone to ringworm. Drought also affects them and we always put water down for them overnight.

Have you heard of St Tiggywinkles Wildlife Hospital in England?
http://www.sttiggywinkles.org.uk/
They do a great job - have a look at their site :) Nice of them to name it after the Beatrix Potter character...

Posted via web from Four Paws and Whiskers

9 comments:

  1. Oh dear. I have very mixed feelings about hedgehogs. They were introduced only a metter of 20-25 years ago on the Isle of Lewis in Scotland where I live and they have reached almost saturation numbers all over the islands since then. A similar problem happened when a mink farm closed because of pressure and the mink were freed. They have multiplied too. The resulut is that the seabirds and birds like the corncrake are being decimated because they are ground nesting.

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  2. PS I can spell, honestly. I shouldn't be so hasty in pressing the 'post' button!

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  3. thats interesting GB - i had not realised that hedgehogs might affect ground nesting birds - do they eat the eggs? I tend to think of them as harmless, cleaning up the snails for us....
    Mink are certainly a risk - negligent to just release them!
    Spellign nto a wurry......they are typos lol

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  4. Yes. They eat the eggs. Some hedgehog lovers actually put out raw eggs for them. There has been a lot of controversy on the Islands between Islanders who want rid of them and the Tiggywinkle lobby who want them left alone. The RSPB on the other hand supports the Islanders.

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  5. I work with a receptionist who breeds albino h/hogs and sells them about £100 each. I do not agree with this. It is ok for nature but not to deliberately breed and sell something with health problems, l feel the same way about breeders of all species.

    GB l think people have lost sight of the realities of nature & there is an obsession about every thing having life at all costs unfortunately people do not look at the costs. In the islanders case to people "it is only an egg" l think that is a lot of the problem. I thought l read somewhere that there is about 5000 hogs on one island or is that all islands? How can somewhere that is not a natural habitat support that amount do people not use their heads?
    I like hogs in my garden but l know that they have enough food (slugs abound) & that they are a natural species for the area. Sometimes when l come home in the early hours l see the resident hog scuttling along from garden to garden always say hi to him but don't approach just let him be.

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  6. Hedgehogs have survived and multiplied to epidemic proportions (as have frogs which are an even more recent introduction but they are not a pest) because there is a huge and abundant supply of food for them.

    The reality of nature is that it finds a balance. Possums are natural and endemic in Australia and are not a nuisance (so I am told) whereas they are a major nuisance in New Zealand (they destroy trees). As are feral cats, rats, stoats and many other animals which prey on the indigenous wildlife.

    I like hedgehogs (and frogs of which I have a huge supply in my pond) but I don't like the fact that on the Islands where they are not indigenous they destroy the eggs of ground nesting birds.

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  7. mm sorry GB reread my post think l wrote it badly l meant to people that do not live in the islands the eggs are just eggs they do not see them as birds but they see the hogs as sweet little creature which they are when under control.

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  8. I certainly agree with you vetnurse about deliberately breeding them being unacceptable...

    It certainly creates a problem when any introduced species threatens to overwhelm a country - GB is right about the possum problem in NZ - a risk for spreading TB as well as the tree damage. Then of course, the rabbits!
    Not sure what can be done in the Hebrides GB - can't imagine they will poison or cull them!

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  9. Thanks Vetnurse for the clarification. I wasn't quite sure where you were coming from. Now I understand.

    There have been huge programmes in the Uists in particular to trap the hedgehogs and return them to the mainland or, I think, humanely kill them. It's strange how people react though. People (mainly non-Islanders) object in droves. However no one objects to mink being trapped and humanely killed because mink have a bad press and are definitely not human-friendly and are, to put it bluntly, vicious little killing machines.

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Comments welcome....always love to hear what you think!

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