Yarmouth Veterinary Center

75 Willow Street
Yarmouth , ME 04096

(207)846-6515

www.yarmouthvetcenter.com

HEDGEHOG BIOLOGY

  • Scientific name: African Pygmy Hedgehog Atelerix albiventris; European Hedgehog Erinaceus europaeus
  • Life span 3 - 5 years, up to 10 is recorded
  • Adult body weight (g): African male 800 - 1200; African female 250 - 400; European male 500 - 600; European female 400 - 800)
  • Dental formula 2(I 3/2 C 1/1 P 3/2 M 3/3) = 36; upper incisor slot into a gap between lower incisors, which project forward; deciduous erupt at 18 days, complete by 9 weeks; permanent teeth erupt at 7 to 9 weeks
  • Sexual maturity > 2 months
  • Breeding year-round
  • Clutch 1 - 7 pups, average 3
  • Gestation 34-37 days
  • Weaning 4 - 6 weeks
  • Age at sexual maturity: male 6 - 8 months; female 2 - 6 months
  • Reproductive lifespan: male lifetime; female 2-3 years
  • Infants are called hoglets
  • Hedgehogs make an assortment of interesting sounds: snorting, huffing, hissing, grunting, screaming, twittering, whistling, clucking, snuffling
  • “Anting”, self-anointing: when hedgehogs encounter something new, they may taste it, then salivate excessively, producing a large amount of foam, which they then spread over themselves