Unmistakable coat of several thousand spines along the back, speckled brown and cream. Brown pointed furry face, small black eyes and big nose. Adults are between 15cm and 30cm in length.
Download a printable field sign guide here!
Hedgehog tracks are best identified by using a footprint tunnel. They are five-toed, with a sharp claw on the end. They are 2.8cm in width and 2.5cm in length. To record footprints, a tunnel can be placed alongside hedgerows and in gardens. A footprint guide and protocol are both available from The Mammal Society.
They can be found in grassland and farmland, and in people’s gardens. They are crinkly, often studded with shiny fragments due to their diet of insects. Variable size, 15-50mm long, 8-10mm thick.
Smell: Sweet smelling, hint of linseed oil.
MaWSE is co-ordinating the South East region of the National Hedgehog Survey, run by the People’s Trust for Endangered Species (PTES), which makes use of footprint tunnels to monitor the hedgehogs recent decline in the UK. You can take part here!
This is a national survey, so if you don’t live in the South East you can still take part by visiting the PTES’s website here.
Throughout the British Isles. (Maps are based on expert advice, as of 2007. Some species ranges may have changed in the time since. We are currently in the process of updating them.)
Ground-living invertebrates; beetles, scarabeids, caterpillars and earthworms principal prey, also eats earwigs slugs and snails, centipedes, millipedes, harvestmen and spiders.
2-3 years on average.