Hedgehog Hibernation Hotel

We don’t have a pet: the closest we get is our BeeHome for solitary bees. (If you’re looking into getting one, I’d vote for the classic version, not the Observer we got. While we’ve seen a bee or two cuddle up in the drawer for the night, none has ever laid any eggs in there.) Researching other ways to provide for wild animals that struggle in urban and suburban areas, I came across several options. Bat lodgings seemed neat, but the bats need two meters of free space beneath their dwelling to launch into flight. A sparrow hotel sounds interesting, but I’m still shying away from drilling through our insulation into concrete to hang it up, because I haven’t figured out how to get it down again easily to clean it. Hedgehog houses, on the other hand, avoid a lot of these problems, so that’s what we built.

And here’s how we did it:

Drill an entryway into an old IKEA coffee table
Drill an entryway into an old IKEA coffee table.
Try to avoid the screws...
Try to avoid the screws…
Lay the table on its side an define its position on the bottom board.
Lay the table on its side an define its position on the bottom board.
Make a slider out of scrap wood to separate the entryway from the hedgehog's crib.
Make a slider out of scrap wood to separate the entryway from the hedgehog’s crib.
Slide in the slider.
Slide in the slider.

Next, put the thing in the cellar as you mull over getting shingles for the roof and mull over how on earth to make the shingles work. But finally, one fine summer’s day, a day off thanks to it being our national holiday, pull it back out and work on the roof.

I used a staple gun to affix the shingle to the roof. The nails I had would have been too long. Not also the thin strip of shingle at the base to seal a crack.
I used a staple gun to affix the shingle to the roof. The nails I had would have been too long. Not also the thin strip of shingle at the base to seal a crack.
I stapled the shingle around the front and back edge, but left it to stick out left and right. Notice the storm hooks to hold the hotel together.
I stapled the shingle around the front and back edge, but left it to stick out left and right. Notice the storm hooks to hold the hotel together.
On the other side, only one storm hook. For easier maintenance access, I installed a hinge to open the roof.
On the other side, only one storm hook. For easier maintenance access, I installed a hinge to open the roof.
Stuff the HogPad with straw—though to be honest I forgot the thick layer of newspaper the instructions said to put in first. Anyway, who still does newspapers?
Stuff the HogPad with straw—though to be honest I forgot the thick layer of newspaper the instructions said to put in first. Anyway, who still does newspapers?

So with the smaller volume (just under the ideal 30x30x30 cm) and the missing newspaper floor and the slightly smaller entrance, this HedgeHotel isn’t 100% to spec, but it should still pass muster, if indeed a hedgehog comes looking.

We stuck the hedgehog hotel under our bushes.
We stuck the hedgehog hotel under our bushes.
The lone straw across the entrance is to let us know if a critter has crept inside. So far, no luck. However, we haven't checked the past few rainy days.
The lone straw across the entrance is to let us know if a critter has crept inside. So far, no luck. However, we haven’t checked the past few rainy days.

Wish us luck—and a boarder!

Update August 18, 2019: In the meantime, the straw has been moved—twice! We know someone’s gone in there, but was it a hedgehog? Now I’m starting to consider a game camera…

See the blueberry I deposited? (Yes, it is a pink cultivar.)
Straw pushed aside again, blueberry gone! (And yes, that’s a slug on the roof… hope the hedgehog ate it later!)

3 thoughts on “Hedgehog Hibernation Hotel

  1. Pingback: Resident Hedgehog | thduggie's blog

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