I am so excited to share our nature study with you this week! Sometimes I think that Lord is just waiting to bless us with these little gems to spice things up! He knows what we are learning about and then casually enriches our studies with bring across our path an opportunity to get a closer peek :o)
I was thrilled to see that November is dedicated to mammals. There are so many interesting mammals that I want to look at. Top of my list has to be our favourite and yet most elusive of British mammals - the Hedgehog. We are blessed to have a Hedgehog that lives in one of the hedges in our garden. Could be more than one, but of course, you only ever see one at a time! Since living here, we have managed to spot him twice - always very late at night - and tried to observe him as best we can by torch-light. Our first spotting was around 11pm. DH and I were so excited that we woke the girls up to come and have a look. The second time was later and decided not to wake them up - much to their disappointment! They have made us promise to wake them up no matter the time -LOL.
Anyhoo, about two weeks ago, I thought that we would turn our focus onto this adorable little fellow as he really does have star status in our household :o) I had a look on Nature Detectives to see what info they had on this little mammal and found a really great little poster - which has been included in our current nature display as you can see above.
I had drawn up a notebooking page for the girls to fill in all we learnt, and what allot we discovered!
* Hedgehogs are very noisy eaters!
* They have five toes on their front feet and four on the back
* Baby Hedgehogs are called hoglets - aaaawwww cute!!!
* They normally live for five years, but can live as long as 10
* They can have up to 7000 spines on their backs
* They are between 15 - 30cm long
* There are only 12 species in the world and only 1 in Britain
* They eat beetles, caterpillars, earthworms and other creepy-crawlies. (put dry cat food out to encourage them into your garden)
* They have poor eyesight but a good sense of smell
* They hibernate over winter
* They can run up to 6mph! Wow
* They bundle up into a ball when they feel threatened.
Now - for the exciting bit. Today (two weeks after our study - I was going to look at squirrels again), we were just finishing off our read aloud time in the conservatory, when Miss V-L looked across the lawn and spotted a 'bump'. We hurriedly put on our shoes and squelched our way over to the 'bump'. Ta-daaaa....
The bump was a Hedgehog! Isn't he just ADORABLE???
We found that he was munching merrily away on some cat pellets we had put out on the lawn a few days ago. He clearly did not feel threatened by us, and went on munching as we stood in the bitterly cold wind watching him. After he had eaten his full - he waddled off into the clump of trees at the end of our garden.
Whew! I feel totally blessed out of my socks - as do the girls. How wonderful to be able to peek into these little moments of nature as they happen. Never in my wildest dreams did I think that we would happen upon a Hedgehog -in broad daylight - and in our own garden!
I will leave you with this little video I shot of our visitor. Please do excuse the background noise - it really is a very windy day today.