top of page


The Spiky Charms of Hedgehogs: A Journey Through Nature, Art, and Myth

Hey there, fellow nature lovers and art enthusiasts! Today, we're rolling out the red carpet for one of the garden's most beloved residents: the hedgehog. These spiky little bundles of joy are not just a delight to encounter but are also steeped in history, folklore, and, yes, art. So, let's take a stroll through the hedge-lined lanes of hedgehog lore, learn a bit about their lives, and discover how they've inspired the enchanting artwork of Jane Haigh.

A Prickly Past: The Evolution of Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs have been scurrying around our planet for about 15 million years, giving them plenty of time to perfect their distinctive look and survival strategies. These little creatures are insectivores, meaning they have a diet primarily consisting of insects, and they've evolved to have a coat of quills as a defense mechanism against predators. When threatened, a hedgehog will curl into a tight ball, leaving only its sharp quills exposed. Talk about natural armor!

Around the Globe: Where Hedgehogs Call Home

While hedgehogs are often associated with the British countryside, these creatures have a wide distribution, calling various parts of Europe, Asia, and Africa home. Each region hosts its own species, adapted to the local environment. However, you won't find these critters in the wilds of Australia or the Americas – unless they're introduced species or in the care of animal lovers. On a recent trip to New Zealand we encountered a few hedgehogs; they aren't quite as loved there on the whole, because they compete with the native population of birds.

A Year in the Life: Seasons of the Hedgehog

The life of a hedgehog is a cycle of foraging, mating, and, for those in colder climates, hibernating. Spring is a busy time, as hedgehogs emerge from hibernation hungry and ready to mate. Summer sees the birth of hoglets, tiny and spineless at first but quickly growing their protective quills. Autumn is a time for feasting, as hedgehogs bulk up for winter hibernation, tucking themselves away in piles of leaves or under logs to snooze through the cold.

Hedgehog Folklore: Myths and Legends

Hedgehogs have a special place in the hearts and myths of many cultures. In British folklore, they're often seen as wise and benevolent creatures, associated with the countryside and good fortune. There are tales of hedgehogs predicting the changing of the seasons, and they even make an appearance in the legend of King Arthur as protectors of the land.

Why the Fleas? A Quirky Quirk

One of the more peculiar aspects of hedgehog life is their relationship with fleas. Hedgehogs are known to host a specific type of flea, which has evolved to coexist with them. Fear not, though; these fleas prefer hedgehog hosts and are unlikely to infest pets or humans. It's just one of the many unique features of these fascinating creatures.

Hedgehog Rescue: A Helping Hand

Sadly, hedgehogs face numerous challenges, from habitat loss to road traffic. This has led to a decline in their numbers and the rise of hedgehog rescue centers. These sanctuaries rehabilitate injured or sick hedgehogs, giving them a second chance at life in the wild. Supporting these centers is a great way to help ensure that hedgehogs continue to thrive. and have some great information and advice to help a hedgehog.

Hedgehogs in the News

The BBC covers many stories involving these amazing creatures

Inspired by Nature: Jane Haigh's Hedgehog Art

Capturing the essence of these adorable creatures, Jane Haigh brings the world of hedgehogs to life through her stunning art. From paintings that highlight the delicate beauty of hedgehogs to products that feature these designs, her work is a tribute to the charm and resilience of these animals. Whether you're a nature enthusiast or an art collector, Jane Haigh's hedgehog art is a must-have.

So, there you have it – a peek into the world of hedgehogs, from their spiky exteriors to their place in folklore and art. As we continue to share our world with these remarkable creatures, let's celebrate and protect them, ensuring they remain a beloved part of our natural heritage.

If you're enchanted by the charm of hedgehogs and inspired by the art they've inspired, head over to Jane Haigh Country Art to explore a collection that celebrates the beauty of the natural world.

A selection of Lincolnshire Stockists:

0 views0 comments


bottom of page