St Tiggywinkles wildlife hospital trust has been experiencing an ‘abnormal’ amount of baby hedgehogs due to the unusually temperate winter we have been experiencing.
The unseasonable weather has meant that - instead of preparing for hibernation - male and female hedgehogs have been tricked into thinking that it is actually the mating season of spring.
Unfortunately, the late-born litters would normally stand little chance of survival in chilly winiter conditions.
Traditionally, the young are born in June or July, following the rutting season in April.
Space agency Nasa declared in October, that global temperatures in 2016 looked set to be the hottest since records began in the 1950s.
The warm weather has been known to cause late rutting, with second litters in late September or October.
However these young - often dubbed ‘autumn orphans’ are unlikely to survive the winter as they are unable to put on enough weight to survive hibernation.
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