There are seventeen different species of hedgehog, located across the world. These are: four-toed hedgehog (central and eastern Africa), North African hedgehog (Algeria, Libya, Tunisia and Morocco), Southern African hedgehog (Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe), Somali hedgehog (Somalia), Amur hedgehog (Russia and China), Southern white-breasted hedgehog (Europe), European hedgehog, Northern white-breasted hedgehog (Poland, Austria and Greece), Long-eared hedgehog (Central Asia and the Middle East), Indian long-eared hedgehog (India), Daurian hedgehog (Russia and Mongolia), Hugh’s hedgehog (China), Desert hedgehog (Sahara Desert, the Middle East), Brandt’s hedgehog (Middle East), Indian hedgehog (India and Pakistan) and the Bare-bellied hedgehog (India).
Hedgehogs are not native to Australia, North America or South America. They have been introduced in New Zealand.
The most well-known of the hedgehog species is the European hedgehog. The European hedgehog is found in several different habitats, including grassland, woodland and meadows. They have even been seen in the Alps and Pyrenees. Hedgehogs thrive in hedgerows, gardens and parks, where they can find suitable material for their winter hibernation nests and a ready supply of food (mainly insects).
Hedgehogs are nocturnal (they come out at night and sleep during the day) and solitary. They don’t dig their own burrows, but they often use the burrows made by other animals as their den. The dens are often lined with grass and leaves. Hedgehogs have their own territory,and males have been known to chase away other male hedgehogs who are trespassing.
What next? Discover some more hedgehog facts.