The effects of releasing captive hedgehogs (Erinaceus europaeus) into the wild

  • Published source details Morris P.A., Munn S. & Craig-Wood S. (1992) The effects of releasing captive hedgehogs (Erinaceus europaeus) into the wild. Field Studies, 8, 89-99.


This study is summarised as evidence for the following.

Action Category

Rehabilitate injured, sick or weak mammals

Action Link
Terrestrial Mammal Conservation
  1. Rehabilitate injured, sick or weak mammals

    A study in 1989 in a forest and grassland site in Yorkshire, UK (Morris et al. 1992) found that three of four European hedgehogs Erinaceus europaeus that had been treated for injuries and released back into the wild survived over two weeks, but two of the three surviving hedgehogs lost weight. Three of four released hedgehogs survived for at least two weeks in the wild, built nests, and established home ranges (total area 6–17 ha). The other hedgehog (a male) died three days after release. After two weeks, two of the three surviving hedgehogs had lost significant body weight (12–36%). Two female and two male hedgehogs were released in June 1989 following treatment in captivity for injuries. Hedgehogs were radio-tracked for 15 nights after release and were located at least once every hour throughout the night until they nested. Hedgehogs were captured and weighed at release and every 1–2 nights throughout the study.

    (Summarised by: Ricardo Rocha)

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