They have a life span of up to seven years. They are also capable of short bursts of speed, raising their body high off the ground as they run on the hairless soles of their feet. The name hedgehog can more broadly be applied to all species in this family. Females will sometimes eat their offspring if the nest is disturbed soon after birth, and males will attack and eat young hedgehogs of the same species.  Their spines are not poisonous or barbed and, unlike the quills of a porcupine, do not easily detach from their bodies. Having a metabolism adapted for low-fat, protein-rich insects, this leads to common problems of obesity. The name hedgehog can more broadly be applied to all species in this family. Archbold Curator Emeritus Vertebrate Zoology and Mammalogy, American Museum of Natural History, New York City, U.S. Would you have a pet with spines? By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. In the Uist group shorebird numbers declined by 39% in areas where hedgehogs are present between 1983 and 2000 (Jackson et al. The European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus), also known as the West European hedgehog or common hedgehog, is a hedgehog species found in Europe, from Iberia and Italy northwards into Scandinavia. Of another 135 hedgehog carcasses collected from throughout Ireland, there were significantly more males than females collected, with peaks in male deaths occurring in May and June. Omissions? A hedgehog is any of the spiny mammals of the subfamily Erinaceinae, in the eulipotyphlan family Erinaceidae. Like opossums, mice, and moles, hedgehogs have some natural immunity against some snake venom through the protein erinacin in the animal's muscular system, although it is available only in small amounts and a viper bite may still be fatal. Eradication can be troublesome. They can be found in Europe, Asia and Africa, and they are an invasive resident of New Zealand. Northern white-breasted hedgehog, Erinaceus roumanicus Amur hedgehog, Erinaceus amurensis Southern white-breasted hedgehog, Erinaceus concolor European hedgehog, Erinaceus europaeus Northern white-breasted hedgehog, Erinaceus roumanicus non (Standl.) The most common species of pet hedgehog is the African pygmy hedgehog. The hedgehog is known as ‘the gardener’s friend’ as it will eat slugs, beetles, caterpillars etc., and does no harm, so if you have a garden a hedgehog is to be encouraged. CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (. Some species, including the western European hedgehog, hibernate during the winter months, having accumulated fat under the skin and around the viscera and shoulders. The African pygmy hedgehog is the species of miniature hedgehog most commonly kept as a pet. L.D. Famously covered in spines, hedgehogs like to eat all sorts of bugs, but especially slugs and crunchy beetles. Scientific name: Atelerix albiventris and Atelerix algiris (from Algeria) Background: Hedgehogs inhabited the earth even during the time of dinosaurs, making the Erinaceidae family the oldest living insectivore! It’s time for the lowdown on one of our planet’s cutest critters! The limbs are thin and very short, but the feet are large and bear long, curved claws (the first toe is small or absent in Atelerix). Scientific name Atelerix albiventris Lifespan 3 years (in the wild) Diet Omnivorous Weight 350 g Length 14 - 28 cm Conservation Least Concern “ Not with that smelly hedgehog hanging around. …or so species of mammals—comprising hedgehogs, golden moles, “true” moles, “true” shrews, the moonrat, gymnures, solenodons, and…. The most common is squamous cell carcinoma. Native habitat Central and Erinaceus europaeus. ) Scientific names are name used by scientists, especially the taxonomic name of an organisms that consist of the genus and species. Image of wild, animals, grassland - 131944430 Autumn orange leaves with hedgehog. The desert hedgehog (Hemiechinus aethiopicus) survives in the extremely arid Sahara and on the Arabian Peninsula, where populations are concentrated around oases and vegetated wadis. Female deaths outnumbered males only in August, with further peaks in female deaths observed in June and July. All wild hedgehogs can hibernate, though not all do, depending on temperature, species, and abundance of food. Download royalty-free Hedgehog, (Scientific name: Erinaceus europaeus) Wild, native, European hedgehog in natural garden habitat with green grass and yellow buttercup. By 2007, legal injunctions against the killing of hedgehogs were put in place. , Hedgehogs uncommonly transmit a characteristic fungal skin infection to human handlers as well as other hedgehogs. Erinaceids are generally shrew-like in form, with long snouts, and short tails. This may be associated with lung/chest wall damage or a small external wound acting like a valve or a clostridium type infection. They snuffle and snort while foraging and manipulate prey solely with the mouth, chewing with noisy smacking of the jaws. Thousands of new, high-quality pictures added every day. Hedgehog cactus, (genus Echinocereus), genus of about 60 species of cacti (family Cactaceae), native from central Mexico to the western United States. , Hedgehogs are a food source in many cultures. They can be found in Europe, Asia and Africa, and they are an invasive resident of New Zealand. Updates?  The British Hedgehog Preservation Society advises that: There is no single cause for this condition. They are terrestrial, though some can climb and swim. They construct large nests of dry vegetation in burrow chambers or beneath vegetation on dry ground. The four-toed hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris), is a species of hedgehog found throughout much of central and eastern Africa. This difficulty is not insurmountable, as it varies from one species to another. Many are run over as they attempt to cross roadways. It is illegal to own a hedgehog as a pet in some US states including Hawaii, Georgia, Pennsylvania, and California, and some Canadian municipalities, and breeding licenses are required. Lewis's marketing had to change, however from hedgehog 'flavoured' to hedgehog 'flavour', due to advertising standards, as the crisps did not actually contain any hedgehog. There are seventeen species of hedgehog in five genera found through parts of Europe, Asia, and Africa, and in New Zealand by introduction. Cancer is very common in hedgehogs. arizonicus (Rose ex Orcutt) L.D. You can find these pets in a wide array of color patterns like salt and pepper, snowflake, and cinnamon. Antibiotic cover should be given. There are one to three annual litters of 1 to 11 offspring, with gestation lasting 31 to 42 days. This ringworm or dermatophytosis infection is caused by Trichophyton erinacei, which forms a distinct mating group within the Arthroderma benhamiae species complex.. , As with most small mammals living around humans, cars pose a great threat to hedgehogs. Scientific Classification Common Name African hedgehog, four-toed hedgehog Kingdom Animalia Phylum Chordata Class Mammalia Order Insectivora Family Erinaceidae Genus Species Atelerix albiventris (white belly) Hedgehogs are easily recognized by their spines, which are hollow hairs made stiff with keratin. The average litter is 3–4 newborns for larger species and 5–6 for smaller ones. Close up with clean background Hedgehog Scientific name: Erinaceus europaeus with his tongue out. The underside is covered by a sparse, coarse coat, ranging from white to black (sometimes mottled), depending upon the species. Other species kept as pets are the long-eared hedgehog (Hemiechinus auritus) and the Indian long-eared hedgehog (H. collaris). Owners often refer to this as "tubing" and promote the behavior by supplying lean tubes. Their numbers are in dramatic decline in the UK as their habitat is threatened. See how much you know about the unconventional animals people keep as pets in this quiz. The species common name is derived from the number of toes found on its hind feet. In my experience, hedgehogs often adopt this low-slung slinking locomotion in dawn/dusk conditions, suggesting they may feel more vulnerable in such ambient lighting when Scientific Name: Atelerix albiventris.  When the animal encounters a new scent, it will lick and bite the source, then form a scented froth in its mouth and paste it on its spines with its tongue. The air can be removed by incising or aspirating through the skin over the back.  Like many of the first mammals, they have adapted to a nocturnal way of life. All species of hedgehogs can roll into a tight ball in self-defense, causing all of the spines to point outwards.  She added that the condition was unique to hedgehogs because they have significant space under their skin as a result of their ability to curl up. The short, stocky body is densely covered with spines except for the underside, legs, face, and ears. Porcupine Scientific Name. There are no hedgehogs native to Australia and no living species native to the Americas (the extinct genus Amphechinus was once present in North America). Together that means “ineffective fighter with a white belly”. , In 1981 Welsh pub-owner Philip Lewis began the manufacture of "hedgehog-flavoured" crisps. Hedgehogs comprise a subfamily (Erinaceinae) of family Erinaceidae, which also includes the moonrat and the gymnures (subfamily Galericinae) of Southeast Asia and the Philippines. They are … The activity patterns of hedgehogs. It is smaller than the European hedgehog, and thus is sometimes called the African pygmy hedgehog. The taxonomy of Porcupines is broken down into the Rodentia order, the Erethizontidae (New World) or Hystricidae (Old World) family and the Erethizon or Chaetomys Genius.  It is smaller than the European hedgehog, and thus is sometimes called the African pygmy hedgehog.