Hedgehogs were back at the feeding bowl this evening. As I sketched I heard the ‘seeeep’ calls of Redwings newly arrived from Scandinavia, migrating by night. I always look forward to hearing them on October evenings. There were few calls this evening, but in the next two or three weeks, given the right conditions many should be audible along with Song Thrushes and Blackbirds. The scope has given me a great view of Jupiter and four of its moons quite low in the east and the milky way is a fine sight in a very clear night sky.
During the afternoon a hedgehog appeared under the bird feeders to eat sunflower hearts dropped by the birds. It seemed to be in good health but I was concerned for its well being so I referred to my books, two of which stated that hedgehogs feed in daylight in the autumn. It should be stressed however that this behaviour can signal that a hedgehog is in trouble as they are chiefly nocturnal feeders. We watched similar behaviour last September, with hedgehogs coming out to feed at the warmest time of the day, presumably to build up fat reserves in time for hibernation.