Why hedgehog feeding stations need baffles.

On discovering we had a hedgehog, I set about researching feeding stations with a view to building one.  Several sites mentioned baffles to stop felines snitching hedgehog food. I know how small a hole out cats can squeeze through, and immediately designed my hedgehog feeding station with baffles.

Firstly, what is a baffle?  Apart from confusion, it is also an obstruction to restrict flow of a fluid.  In our case, a sinuous feline.

Here is what baffles look like in my home built hedgehog feeding station - which only took two hours to knock up out of 150x15mm gravel board, and a bit of left over roofing felt. NOTE the feeding station in the first photos is upside down.  I do not have a base, simply plonking the feeding station on what I laughingly call a lawn.  There is no mess to clean up, as I simply move it around every week or so.

These dishes are produced by RSPB. I found them in our local Pets at Home for £4 each. Bargain. NOTE, now that it has finally stopped raining, one of the dishes will be filled with water.  Though I do have a pond, and there are woods behind us where there are a couple of large ponds, so the hog will not do without water.

Let's start with the local ruffian, a neighbour's cat which is a bit of a thug.  Without the baffles it could easily reach any hog food.

Still not convinced?   First some photos of the hedgehog going through the hole I cut in our side gate.

Now the ruffian


Oops, my cut and paste went a bit wry.

Now one of our cats, who is smaller than the local ruffian.

And now the other way

T'was nothing, she says.

  • Hmm, can't seem to edit my own post.

    The gravel board I used was 150mm x 25mm.  Not the size I had in my original post. I've been doing a bit of plumbing, so have 15mm pipes on my mind.

    I also bought the gravel boards from a local timber merchants, in my case Beaumont forestry.  Cheaper than the DIY superstores and better quality. The boards have been pressure treated, but with the safe preservative.  I should hope so, seeing as I made my raised veg beds out of them.

  • Flipping heck you wouldn't credit it. I never though a cat could get through a gap that small. Love your homemade hedgie house Angus, your hedgehog is in good hands. Have you seen Wendy's thread on here with her hedgies at night?

    Lot to learn

  • After all of above, I realised I haven't shown our hog actually using its feeder. Plus, another reason for baffles.

    In addition to bird and hog feeder, I have a messy garden. Lots of leaves from oak and birch trees in borders. Logs lying around from when I pollarded the birch trees. And the pond, some 1.3 square metres - complete with frogs and Great Crested newt!

    I also put a trail cam inside the feeder, but the thing had a great deal of difficulty focusing.  This is an Apeman trail cam, which isn't brilliant at stills, though its videos aren't bad. I might put my ancient Victure trail cam in, which does better with close ups.  I hadn't used it for some time as I thought its PIR had stopped. Not so, it needs a goodly amount of charge in the batteries i.e. better than about 15%.

    Now, the unwelcome visitor.

  • Looks like a good design and nice to see it being used.
    Good clips of the cats getting through the narrow spaces, too.


    Nige   Flickr

  • Well Mr/Mrs Fox isn't going to get in there:-) Good not to have a tidy garden, the animals love it.

    Lot to learn