How to attract hedgehogs and badgers

How to attract hedgehogs and badgers

Putting out a bit of food can help see mammals through colder spells.
Hedgehog illustration

Most wild mammals are nocturnal and secretive so you may not know you have any visitors. Whether you have an urban garden or you live in the countryside, hedgehogs and wood mice – and even badgers often visit. You might be surprised at who makes an appearance!

Constantly putting out food can make wild mammals reliant on unnatural food sources, but during winter and harsh weather, putting out a bit of food lets mammals top up any low food stocks to help see them through the colder weather. Put out food at dusk and don't forget a dish of water!

Putting out a bit of food will help see wild mammals through the colder weather.

 

Feeding hedgehogs:

  • Plain meat based cat food
  • Some garden centres stock specialist hedgehog food, as it helps keep their teeth sharp and clean
  • If you have a problem with cats eating the food, hedgehogs also enjoy unsweetened muesli or weetabix. (Alternatively, place the food under a shelter of brick with a gap too small for cats but large enough for hedgehogs)
  • Hedgehogs are also known to be fond of sultanas and small pieces of fruit, cooked potato, light fruitcake, plain biscuits, cooked chicken and raw mince
  • It is important not to leave bread and milk out for hedgehogs, as it can cause diarrhoea

 

Feeding badgers:

  • Wet cat or dog food
  • Fruits - such as apples, plums or pears
  • Nuts - unsalted peanuts or brazils
  • Root vegetables are known to be popular with badgers, so you could leave out carrots and cooked potato as well as fruit to try to divert them
  • Specially formulated badger food is available commercially.

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John Bridges

Gillian Lloyd