The hedgehog’s spines are different than those of the porcupine, with whom they are often confused. Hedgehog’s spines do not readily detach, and are not barbed like those of the North American porcupine. The hedgehog’s spines are normally carried laying flat on the animals back, but can be raised to form a protective shield. When faced with danger, the hedgehog will roll into a ball to protect it’s face, legs, and soft belly. The spines on the forehead can be raised independently of those on the rest of the body and some hedgehogs will ram a potential predator or rival with these spines.
African Pygmy Hedgehog
The African pygmy hedgehog is one of 16 different species of hedgehogs that can be found in Europe, Asia, Africa and New Zealand. The hedgehog family of animals is very old, and they have changed little over the last 15 million years. The pygmy hedgehog has hollow spines that are modified hairs covering it’s back and soft fur on it’s underbelly. They are typically grey to brown in coloration, blending with the brush and leaves of their savannah and brush land homes.
Hedgehogs are nocturnal, moving about in search of food mostly after dark. They are considered insectivores, although they will supplement their diet of bugs with some
fruits, vegetables and even bird eggs when they can find them. They are welcomed by gardeners in their native habitat as they prefer insects and will devour garden
African pygmy hedgehogs have become a fairly popular pet in the U.S.. They are easy to care for and can be quite friendly when they are handled regularly. They breed readily in captivity and live to be 4-6 years old. The Bar C Ranch breeds hedgehogs for pets. If you are interested in more information about our hedgehogs, please feel free to email or call us. We often have babies available for purchase. Be sure to check your local regulations to be sure that hedgehogs are alowed as pets in your area.