My bio states I own a hedgehog but I’ve never really blogged about it much, maybe he has been mentally imprinting on me that he prefers his privacy, maybe I’ve just always had something to write about instead of grabbing at thin air for something, ANYTHING, like I am today.
Mr Pricklesworth Jnr is actually a Madagascan Lesser Hedgehog Tenrec (but you try and shorten that to fit into a 160 character bio). Or as he is known in our house: de hedgehob
What Wikipedia has to say:
- Kingdom : Animalia
- Phylum: Chordata
- Class: Mammalia
- Order: Afrosoricida
- Family: Tenrecidae
- Genus: Echinops (Martin, 1838)
- Species: E. Telfairi
- Distribution and habitat – It is endemic to Madagascar. Its natural habitats are subtropical or tropical dry forests, dry savanna, subtropical or tropical dry shrubland, and subtropical or tropical dry lowland grassland.
- Description – The lesser hedgehog tenrec is a small, stout-bodied animal similar to the hedgehog, hence the name. Their tails are short, their limbs and muzzles are of moderate length, and their ears are prominent. The entire dorsum is covered with sharp spines. Color is usually yellow buff; individuals range from near white to almost black. Head and body length is 5 to 6.8 inches. Weight is about 7 ounces.
- Shelter and hibernation – It spends its daytime hours resting under a log or in a hollow tree, although trees are widely scattered in its native habitat. In hot weather, it sleeps with its body extended but otherwise lies in a curled position. It hibernates in the winter time.
- Diet – They feed upon, as to an insectivore, insects, but sometimes other small invertebrates as well as small vertebrates, and usually forage alone, except for a mother with her young.
- Reproduction – Breeding is known to occur in October but may depend on warm weather first arousing the animals from winter torpor and on an available food supply. The gestation period lasts 62 to 65 days. The female then gives birth to averagely 7 babies (1-10). The young are weaned at 18 to 22 days of age.
I have had rats and mice as pets before and Mr Pricklesworth is treated the same as I did them seeing as to me they aren’t much different (unless of course you count their spikes) and he comes shopping with me – he loves perching on my shoulder and the looks we often get range from horrified to inquisitive to (this really happened) people jumping over counters to get away from us.
I’m sure that you get those that bite so I suggest you don’t go up to just any random tenrec and declare a state of friendship just as you wouldn’t do so with any other animal. Our Mr Pricklesworth has been handled since he was itty bitty so is happy to be manhandled (even by Fysh) though you do need to give him a little warning (a tap on the glass followed by a stroke or two along his prickles) before grabbing at him as he WILL bite you.
Our dear Mr Pricklesworth Jnr is currently without a mate and am pretty sure he will be for a long time to come as they are not exactly a dime a dozen like your more “typical” pets (not that he’s not as awesome or more so than them) and when you do come across them they go for rather ridiculous sums of money. One day we’ll get him a friend though as I’m sure that even tentrecs get lonely.