Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year

A huge thank you from all the hedgehogs in our care for all the donations and cards received. This will all go towards food and the extra heating for the ones that are still too small to survive hibernation,

Best wishes for christmas + in santa hat

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charlie the hoglet

Update on Charlie from Islay. He arrived here on the 5th November after a ferry and car journey from Islay and was 202 grams and minus a front leg. He was found out of the nest and it appears that … Continue reading

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thorny head worms in hedgehogs

We published a warning about this worm in September 2012 but I will copy the symptoms and treatment here again.

I posted a dead hedgehog to London Zoo on the 16th for a post mortem and the email received on the 19th confirmed thorny head worms along with lungworm as being the main cause of death.

I have 2 others in for post mortems at Perth since the 30th May but no report back yet.

Acanthocephala Infection of Hedgehogs

(Thorny-headed Worm)
There has been a high incidence of this reported this year from varies parts of the UK and the Continent

Summary Information

Alternative Names • Thorny headed worm infection of hedgehogs
Disease Agents • Thorny headed worms (Acanthocephalids).

General Description • Worm infection usually of the intestines but also the mesentery.

Clinical signs:
• Heavy infections in juveniles may result in emaciation, poor condition, squealing and death.
• Diarrhoea and emaciation from severe infections.
• Usually asymptomatic although heavy infection may be fatal.
o Usually asymptomatic in adults.
• Severe infections: Diarrhoea, weight loss.

• Gastrointestinal:
o Presence of the worms in the intestine (and mesentery).
o Intestinal mucosal damage (ulceration of the intestinal wall); severe damage to the mucosa may be seen with very heavy infections.
o Intestinal ulceration recorded due to Echinorhynchus erinacei infection.
o Ulceration of the colon recorded due to Echinorhynchus roase infection.
Note: Often there may be an associated gastrointestinal bacterial infection. [See: Colibacillosis (with special reference to Waterfowl and Hedgehogs), Proteus Infection in Waterfowl and Hedgehogs, Salmonellosis (with special reference to Waterfowl and Hedgehogs)]
Further Information
Transmission: • Ingestion of infected insect intermediate hosts.
Susceptibility: • Juvenile hedgehogs appear to develop more severe and pathological infections than do adults.
• Faecal examination: presence of worms, like white grass seeds, visible to the naked eye.
• Faecal examination by sedimentation (necessary due to the high specific weight of the eggs): presence of eggs; the egg contains a larva, already armed with hooks.
• Post mortem examination: presence of worms may be detected incidentally at post mortem examination. Prosthorhynchus spp. are about 6mm long.

• Praziquantel (Droncit, Bayer, plc.) 0.1 ml or ⅛ tablet for under 200g bodyweight, 0.2ml or ¼ tablet for 200-500g, 0.4ml or ½ tablet for 500g-1kg. Usually single dose, additional doses may be required, but at intervals of at least 48 hours.
• Levamisole 1% injection, 10 mg/kg bodyweight, subcutaneous.
• Praziquantel (25 mg per kg bodyweight) orally, or levamisole, or mebendazole.
• Praziquantel (Droncit, Bayer) 10-20 mg/kg bodyweight intramuscular or subcutaneous.
• Praziquantel (Droncit, Bayer plc.) 25 mg (½ a Droncit (Bayer plc.) 50mg tablet) per hedgehog for individuals above 500g bodyweight, ¼ tablet (12.5mg) per individual for hedgehogs below 500g bodyweight.
• Suggested therapy for associated bacterial infection: Potentiated sulphonamides (e.g. Tribrissen (Trimethoprim/ Sulphonamide) 24% (Schering-Plough Animal Health), 30 mg/kg once daily intramuscularly or subcutaneously, for five to eight days, or Zaquilan (Schering-Plough Animal Health) 20-40 mg/kg orally once daily), or Amoxycillin / Clavulanic acid (30-50 mg/kg twice daily orally, subcutaneously or intramuscularly) or Enrofloxacin (10 mg/kg twice daily subcutaneously, intramuscularly or orally).
o Supportive therapy, as required: Fluid therapy if the hedgehog is not eating and drinking. Buscopan (Boehringer Ingelheim Limited) is recommended (0.1-0.2 ml/kg no more frequently than every eight hours, not for prolonged use) if squeals indicate that the hedgehog is suffering from intestinal cramping. Probiotics, digestive enzymes, vitamins and Kaolin may also be useful.

Records of infection:
• Echinorhynchus amphipachus in the mesentery of European hedgehogs (Erinaceus spp.) and Echinorhynchus rosai, Moniliformis major and Prosthenorchis erinacei in the intestines. Also Echinorhynchus erinacei causing ulceration of the intestines, and Prosthenorchis elegans and Prosthenorchis spirula in the intestines.
• In European hedgehogs (Erinaceus spp.) Moniliformis erinacei, Moniliformis major, Prosthenorchis spp. in the intestines and Echinorhynchus rosai (possibly a synonym of Prosthorhynchus cylindraeus) causing ulceration of the colon. Also Echinorhynchus amphipachus reported in the mesentery of European hedgehogs.
• Moniliformis cestodiformis in the central African hedgehog Atelerix albiventris and Moniliformis moniliformis in the central African hedgehog Atelerix albiventris (in northern Africa and the Pityusic islands) and in Israel in both Erinaceus concolor and Hemiechinus auritus.
• Prosthorhynchus sp. in the omentum of 2/74 hedgehogs at post mortem examination, July 1976 to November 1986, in the UK.
• Nephridiorhynchus major in seven Erinaceus europaeus europaeus in Lebanon.
• Prothenorchis elegans and Moniliformis moniliformis in five Hemiechinus auritus in Egypt.

Host taxa groups /species
• Atelerix albiventris – Four-toed hedgehog
• Erinaceus concolor – East European hedgehog
• Erinaceus europaeus – West European Hedgehog
• Hemiechinus auritus – Long-eared hedgehog
(List does not contain all other species groups affected by this disease)

Information supplied by Wildlife Information Network.

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Had a pleasant evening on the 29th at St Michaels Inn with The Rotary Club of North Fife to be presented with their CITIZEN OF THE YEAR 2014 Award for caring for hedgehogs over the last 19 years.

Came home at 9.15pm to messages about a hedgehog found in Methil that was poorly. It was brought to us but unfortunately it died through the night as did the previous small one that was found on Monday 26th.

The males brought in this year have now totalled 9 with 7 died so the decision was taken to take these 2 up to the Scottish Agricultural College Veterinary Services place at Perth and have post mortems carried out to establish if there is some infection going around that only effects the males.

Have to thank my neighbour Rick for the lift to Perth as I am still not driving.

I will post the results of the PM’s when I get them. The last one that I took to them had died of Pasteurellosis due to Pasteurella multocida infection in 2008. It had developed swellings around the throat area and died. At necropsy an abscess in the right pharyngeal area extended along the right side of the larynx and proximally towards the ear. Pasteurella multocida was cultured from the abscess.

Google “Pasteurella multocida” and “Pasteurellosis” and be surprised where it comes from and who can be affected by it.

100_2100-best Apology for the shadows but I laid the picture on the floor in the conservatory and the reflection on the glass was part of my shadow and the roof beams.

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When out walking or with your dog be aware of the danger from ticks just now. The warning has been broadcast on the TV as this is the busy time for them.

Also look out for any hedgehogs that you find and inspect them for ticks. The photo below does not need a lot of searching to realize that it has a heavy tick burden and is in need of assistance immediately if it is to have any hope of survival.

Small hedgehog with heavy tick burden

First attempt at removing ticks....still more to come


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It’s Hedgehog Awareness Week this month (4 – 10th May) and the British Hedgehog Preservation Society is asking everyone to make a promise to do one extra thing to help hedgehogs during the week.  You could make a 5” square hole in a boundary fence to allow easy access for ‘hogs, put out suitable food and water, display an information poster from BHPS, make a log pile, the list is endless and most tasks will only take a few minutes, so please do get involved. See for more information.

It is difficult to know when the first litters of hoglets will be born.  In most years it is late May to June that the first litters appear but this year the weather has been milder and the adults may have come out of hibernation that much earlier. 

Do bear this is mind when gardening.  Under a shed is an ideal place for a female hedgehog to make her nursery nest.  However, every year we get calls about sheds being demolished and gardeners then find a nest with mother and hoglets under the flooring.  If there has not been too much disturbance and the mother is still around she may well move her hoglets to a new nest.  However if she does not return overnight then the hoglets may need to be rescued.   If you do disturb a nest give the BHPS a call ASAP for more detailed advice on how the help the family stay together.

Any hoglets found out in the day will need to be rescued and remember they do not come in ones so search for other “orphans”.  Listen for a high pitched squeak, this is their distress call.  Also watch out for both domestic and wild creatures that are interested in a certain spot in the garden, they may have spotted a potential meal in an abandoned hoglet.

If a pile of leaves appears overnight in the garden this may also be an indication of a new nest.  Sometimes female hedgehogs move their nursery nest at the last moment and can be seen gathering nesting material and making a new nest.  This can even be seen in the daytime.  However the hedgehog will be moving with a purpose, and unlike most hedgehogs seen out in the day, will not need to be rescued.  Watch the area and with luck around 4 weeks later the hoglets may be seen venturing out of the nest for the first time.

Try to make your garden safer for hedgehogs.  See the BHPS’s leaflet on “Gardening with Hedgehogs” which gives lots of ideas on helping your local hedgehogs stay safe.  If in doubt about whether a hedgehog needs to be rescued give the BHPS a call, it is better safe than sorry and the sooner one is rescued the more chance it has of surviving.

If you are concerned about any hedgehog that you see contact the British Hedgehog Preservation Society on 01584 890801 (if you can weigh the hedgehog first that is always helpful).  For more information about hedgehogs and how to help them visit the BHPS web site at 

Edinburgh the hedgehog exploring the garden

Edinburgh starting to self annoint

Edinburgh self annointing in the garden

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Glenfiddich Spirit Of Scotland Awards Night

Oh well that’s the big night over and as I expected the award went to the one that I said would be the main competition, Gordon Buchanan the Wildlife Cameraman/Presenter. A few comments heard were that it seems that the public prefer to see photos/films of wildlife rather than saving them.

A big thank you to everyone that voted for me and the hedgehogs. I know there will be a lot of disappointed voters out there but these things happen and we just have to get on with it and worry about where the next sick or injured hedgehog is going to come from. A lot of people have said there will always be another time but at the rate the hedgehogs are dissapearing there willl be none to care for very soon. A few years ago it was the sharp rise in food prices that  looked like we would have to close (plus injuries and hospitalisation) but we managed to overcome these hitches but the lack of hedgehogs is something we have no control over.

Speaking to some of the other guests from up north and they also appear to have a lack of hedgehogs but plenty badgers around. Things are looking grim for the hedgehog population these days, we have taken in 51 so far for this year (in 2008 we had 54 admitted in November alone) and now have 22 in care. The last two came in on the 23rd from Montrose at 332 grams and the other on the 27th from Perth at 353 grams.

The seating arrangement for the meal had me next to Judy Murray and it would have been Andy on the other side except that he was in Miami. Andy won the Sport category and also Top Scot.

The presentation video for our nomination was excellent by showing the small hedgehog from Kirkcaldy that was being attacked by 2 Magpies when it was rescued. It was shot by Gerry & Celine Clark of who were doing all the presentation shots.

Must also give a BIG THANK YOU to whoever it was that nominated us in the first place and to the panel that selected us for the finals. Also thanks to Grants & Glenfiddich for the enjoyable evening at the awards and the present of the bottle whisky.

Must not forget a mention to Esther McLuckie who must have wondered what sort of place she had phoned that evening in September. She was just unlucky that she phoned after we had answered the phone twice in the previous 15 minutes to nusiance calls. When she said that she was delighted to confirm that Wormit Hedgehogs have reached the shortlist etc my reaction was to wonder what the catch was and how much was it going to cost. After she sent an email through I had to phone back the next day and apologise for sounding a bit suspicious the evening before and explain about the other calls. After meeting her at awards we had a good laugh about it, so THANK YOU ESTHER.

I will attach a photo of Montrose on the left and Perth on the right of the bottle of whisky that was given to us with our own special label.

Montrose and Perth with Glenfiddich Whisky


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Thank you for your votes

Well folks that’s the voting closed so now the wait to find out who the lucky voters are that won the prizes for voting and then the long wait to find out how we done.

The awards are on the 28th at the Prestonfield House Hotel in Edinburgh and as far as I know that will be when I find out how we done.

A big thank you to everyone that voted for the hedgehogs and I will post when I know the results.

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This photo is an example of a “lucky” hedgehog that managed to get out before it was cooked. With a lot of care and TLC it recovered to be able to tell the tale.

Please remember that the voting for the Glenfiddich Spirit Of Scotland Awards closes at 23.59Hrs on the 7th so if you have not already done so then please vote for us and get your friends and family to do so also. After 19 years of caring for hedgehogs this is an honour to even get this far with being nominated.

Click here to enter your vote and possibly win one of the prizes that is up for grabs.

A "lucky" hedgehog that escaped the fire.

This can also be seen on Facebook @ Hedgie Centre Wormit.

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Meet the hero of the hedgehogs

This was in our local newspaper The Courier which covers a large area of the East side of Scotland.

It has a reminder about voting in the Glenfiddich Spirit Of Scotland Awards 2013 for which we are nominated in the Environment category. If you or someone you know hasn’t already voted for us then please click on the following link:

Vote here

There are prizes up for grabs and it is free to vote.


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