Four toed Hedgehog

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hedgehog-260The four-toed hedgehog is an oval-bodied animal between 5.9 and 9.8 inches in length and weighing between 8.8 and 21 oz. Females are typically larger than males. It has short legs, short tail typically around 0.98 inches in length, a long nose, and small beady eyes. The ears and whiskers are both relatively large, implying that the animal has good senses. As its common name implies, and unlike related species, the four-toed hedgehog typically has only four toes on each foot, lacking the hallux. However, in some individuals, a small bony lump may be present in place of the hallux, or there may even be a well-developed toe, especially on the hind feet.

Hedgehogs are built for survival. Their large ears give them an excellent sense of hearing, while their wet snout gives them a great sense of smell. Their body is covered in over 3,000 short spines, which are simply modified hairs made from keratin. Considering this, hedgehogs have an exceptional form of protection. In fact, when a hedgehog is frightened, it will raise its spines upright in a crisscross pattern and roll up into a ball, tucking in its face, belly, feet, and tail for complete protection. Unlike porcupines that shed their quills, hedgehogs do not shed their spines.

Conservation Status: Least Concern
Least Concern - LC

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Stay tuned. Video coming soon!

Here are a few fun facts:

  • In a territorial attack, the animal will erect the spines around its head and snort, grunt, hiss, and butt heads with the offending individual.
  • Vocalizations include a repertoire of snorts, hisses, grunts, and twitters. During courtship, males serenade females with a birdlike call and she will respond with hisses, snorts, and evasive movements.
  • Like all hedgehogs, the four-toed hedgehog exhibits an interesting behavior known as self-anointing. This curious behavior usually occurs when the animal encounters an irritating substance and entails the hedgehog forming a bubbly foam substance in its mouth and subsequently rubbing the mixture over its spines.

Park Hours

Open 7 days a week
April 1 st – October 31 st:
10:00 am to 5:00 pm

November 1 st – March 31 st:
10:00 am to 4:00 pm
Closed Thanksgiving and Christmas Day

Admission Prices

Adults 12 & over $7.00

Children 3 to 11 $5.00

Seniors 65+ $6.00

Children 2 years and under — FREE

Our Location

Charles Paddock Zoo is located at 9100 Morro Road, Atascadero, CA 93422

Contact Us

Phone: 805.461.5080

Email us at info@charlespaddockzoo.org

zooeducation@atascadero.org

 

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