Our prickly friend Nemo joined The New Children’s Museum in March of 2013 when he was about one year old. He had bounced around a couple of different homes until being donated to The Wildlife Sanctuary so he could be used as a program and display animal. African pygmy hedgehogs are primarily nocturnal animals and run quite long distances at night, which is why there is a wheel in his cage in which he can run.
10 Fun Facts About Hedgehogs
- As avid runners, hedgehogs travel around 5 miles each evening.
- Hedgehogs are primarily insectivores, feasting on small grubs and bugs.
- As nocturnal animals they are most active an night.
- Covered in a sheath of quills, hedgehogs use them as a defense mechanism to protect themselves from predators.
- Their quills are made of keratin, which is the same substance as human hair and nails.
- Unlike porcupines, hedgehogs quills can not detach and remain within the skin of an attacking animal.
- The first domesticated hedgehogs can be traced back to the Romans in the 4th century B.C.
- The life expectancy of wild hedgehogs is 2 to 3 years whereas the life expectancy of captive hedgehogs is 8 to 10 years. This is due to predation by predators in the wild.
- Hedgehogs typically have a litter of 2 to 10 babies.
- Their preferred habitat is desert and savanna regions in Africa.