||Four months old|
found Maddy on October 24th, 2008 during midday when she was strolling
around in the garden in front of our house at Linz/Pöstlingberg. She was
very small and skinny (about 250 grams) and was searching for food in the
warm sunshine - what an unusual appearance, as hedgehogs in Europe are
Free living animals which are under nature conservation are not allowed to
be taken away from their habitat. But the only exception is when the life
of such an animal is in danger - as hers was. Hedgehogs found in late
autumn with a live weight under 500 grams may be given help by feeding
them and giving them shelter over the cold winter months. In late March
when the first insects and snails (their favorite food) come around, they
have to be given back to nature. We will do this then, but have been
taking care of her and love her.
We coddled her up with cat food, boiled or steamed mince meat with
scrambled egg, oatmeal, grapes, pears and fresh avocado (which seemed to
be her favorite food). Right now Maddy is in our cellar hibernating. While
she was still in our apartment, she made friends with our cat Simba. But
since he stung himself once accidentally with one of her spikes, he
avoided getting close to her.
One week before we discovered Maddy in our garden we saw one dead big
hedgehog (driven over by a car or lorry) on the road near our settlement -
maybe it was Maddy's mom or dad? If we succeed to get her over the cold
winter and she is still alive in April, we really helped a poor, lonely
creature - we owed it to nature!
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