10/31/2008

Sweet Dreams

As the weather has taken a turn for the worse and temperatures have dropped, I feel like hibernating like this little hedgehog. Favourite sites for hibernation are under piles of old leaves and wood stacks so it is very important to look out for these creatures if you are considering lighting a bonfire for November the fifth. 

The little fellow that modeled for this illustration would be too small to make it through the winter, he was actually curled up in the palm of a hand during a summer visit to an animal sanctuary, (now you know all my secrets). They do need to have reached a good weight before they have built up enough reserves to see them through the winter.

I have found a very good website with lots of helpful advice about hedgehog protection, it is owned by The British Hedgehog Preservation Society.The site has easy to follow instructions for creating housing for hedgehogs which would provide shelter during the winter months.

Now I own a dog I have become very aware of the effect of fireworks on animals, in fact Ted is reduced to a quivering wreck when he hears a bang. I loved bonfire night when I was a child but I do wish that we could limit our use of fireworks to maybe one week in November. It seems to be the fashion nowadays to have them all year round which makes it difficult for animal owners.

23 comments:

  1. Superb illustration! So much good sense in what you write. Thanks for the post and for the blog.

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  2. Your hedgehog illustration looks like a photo! Wow, the detail is amazing.

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  3. Here! Here! My last dog was a wreck, this time of year. I hate it.
    On the other hand, your hedgehog is so sweet. We have a wildlife hospital near here and every year folks take on the job of bringing up the orphaned babies.

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  4. Ever so lovely...I my garden wanders a couple of hedge hogs..they are not very shy and in the evening very often they come to the backdoor and sniffle around for a bit.. Beautiful illustration:)

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  5. Hedgehogs have been sadly very scarce here this year.
    We'd often hear their snufflings and funny noises in our garden, and were glad of them keeping the slug population down.
    I do hope they return next year?
    I too agree about limiting fireworks to certain times. Children don't seem to be bothered about bonfire night anymore. Its nothing special or different because they can see fireworks all year round. This is sad as we will end up losing a tradition.

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  6. Oh my goodness. Your illustration is wonderful. Such a strong feeling of all is as it should be and the details make me want to enjoy it endlessly!

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  7. Wonderful illustration and thoughtful post.

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  8. Hedgehogs aren't very apparent here this year either, we have however been plagued with rats so have had to stop feeding the birds and leaving water, which also attracts rats I have learnt. The vermin control man assured me that hedgehogs could not enter the bait boxes but I have my doubts, I am sure a baby hedgehog could squeeze through the gap. I also fear that the overuse of slug pellets may be very hazardous.

    Thanks as always for your kind comments and welcome new visitorsTammie Lee, Annette and Hermes, I hope you enjoy your visit and return soon.

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  9. Fantastic hedgehog illustration! I am not a big fan of fireworks anymore. The fireworks have become far too big and powerful. Last year my greenhouse roof was smashed by a 'rocket'. I do worry about all the wild animals and birds too.

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  10. Wonderful illustration - I love hedgehogs, when I was a child we used to have loads in our garden living in and under the compost heap. When we first came to this house we had a hedgehog or two and have created little log areas for them and for the frogs and toads in our compost area behind the shed but we haven't seen any of the little creatures for a couple of years now.
    I use to love bonfire night but now it is just too noisy and goes on for too long, I feel as if I'm on constant alert at this time of year. Two of our cats end up under the bed with their claws in the carpet, the third, dear old Tom is deaf so the noise doesn't bother him at all:)

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  11. I so agree about fireworks. I cannot enjoy them for thinking of the frightened animals enduring the cacophony. After our city has their fireworks display in August, scores of lost dog signs always appear all over from the poor creatures running off to get away from the frightful noise.

    And how I do love hedgehogs!! Such charming little creatures! You captured this one perfectly!

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  12. That is the dearest picture! My grand daughter will love it.
    Thank you for sharing your amazing work.
    Georganna

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  13. Oh my - that is such a darling illustration *sigh*

    I remember being taught at school about fireworks and bonfires and would always make my dad triple check our bonfire. I also remember having German students stay over and ask why us Brits have fireworks all week rather than just on November 5th - I didn't have an answer for them. t's not just animals who fear them - I've known young children to be terrified by them too!

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  14. Wonderful illustration! These days I've been fascinated with hedgies!

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  15. I have never seen a hedgehog...they look so dear! Thank you for the link to more information about them...

    Love your blog...love your beautiful work! I always enjoy my visits!

    Best wishes~
    Michelle

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  16. He is so cute! I saw what I thought might be a hedge hog waddling under a rock which was burrowed out. But then I later saw a fox coming out of the same hole. I wonder if the fox ran off the hog?

    On your next visit, you'll will see I am blogging under a new title. I hope you enjoy it. I think it will be nice to combine my love for all subjects on one.

    Love, Dana

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  17. Your pictures are absolutely lovely. I do so agree about fireworks and animals. We live on a fairly isolated farm so the noise is quite far away but still our dogs and cats get very nervous.

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  18. Oh, if only we could all feel as safe as your sweet hedgehog appears.
    Darlene

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  19. Wow Valerie - he's amazing!
    Funny, I began a drawing that included a curled up hedgehog recently.. and my befuddled brain had forgotten about it until I saw this!

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  20. What a gorgeous illustration (as usual!) I loathe firework night, it sends our cats into trembling fits. But at least round here it is more or less limited to Nov 5. Sadly, I haven't seen a hedgehog in our garden for a few years, though something eats a lot of snails and pushes my pot plants over.

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  21. A lovely hedge hog. Years ago I found a dead hedge hog and called a local natural history museum. They were very interested to have it, so I wrapped it in newspapers and put it in the freezer. A little later my brother was planning a big dinner and thought he had a large chicken in the freezer. When the oven was hot, he was very suprised by what he unwrapped. We all starved, but the museum was eventually very pleased.

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  22. I really miss seeing the occasional lovely hedgehog here in Maine....I'm pretty sure they don't even have them here...but I did just yesterday find a kitten curled up in a pile of leaves, he is about six weeks old and has been taken under our wings...sleeping right now by the wood burning stove.
    Your painting of the hedgehog is spectacular...as always!!!

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  23. ooooooooooooooh!!!Did I ever seen something more sweet??You melt my heart with this little one!!You are such a great artist!!!

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