Hedgehog Nest Box Plans (Expert Answers)

✅ Fact Checked
Updated on January 16, 2023
Michael Colt, Bachelor Computer Science Degree & Computer Engineering.
Written by
Michael Colt, Bachelor Veterinary Medicine & Animal Science.
Ella Williams
Fact Checked by
Ella Williams
Dr. Michael Colt is a highly qualified veterinarian and animal scientist. He has extensive knowledge and experience in the care and treatment of animals, and a deep understanding of the latest scientific research in the field. Dr. Colt is dedicated to promoting the health and well-being of animals, and is committed to providing the highest level of care to his patients. Holds a Bachelors Degree in Veterinary Medicine from Middle Tennessee State University.

⭐ Fun Fact ⭐
Did you know that hedgehogs are great swimmers? They have the ability to hold their breath underwater for up to five minutes, which is quite impressive for a small mammal! So, if you have a pond in your garden, you might see a hedgehog taking a dip on a hot summer day!
Hedgehogs are fascinating creatures, and providing them with a suitable home is a wonderful way to support these wonderful creatures. Building a hedgehog nest box is an excellent way to provide a safe, dry, and warm place for hedgehogs to hibernate, rest, and breed. Whether you are a seasoned DIY enthusiast or a beginner, this guide will provide you with all the information you need to build the perfect hedgehog nest box for your garden. With easy-to-follow instructions and clear diagrams, building a hedgehog nest box has never been easier. So, let’s get started!

1 What is a Hedgehog Nest Box?

Definition and Purpose of a Hedgehog Nest Box

A hedgehog nest box is a shelter that provides hedgehogs with a warm and secure place to nest and raise their young. Its primary purpose is to provide a safe and suitable habitat for hedgehogs, which are facing declining numbers due to habitat loss and other environmental factors. By offering hedgehogs a safe and cozy place to call home, hedgehog nest boxes can help to increase local populations and support their survival.

Materials and Dimensions for a Hedgehog Nest Box

When it comes to materials, it is recommended to use untreated wood for the construction of a hedgehog nest box. This will ensure that no harmful chemicals are introduced into the hedgehog’s environment. The box itself should measure approximately 30cm x 30cm x 20cm, with an entrance hole that is at least 8cm in diameter. The roof should be slanted to allow rain to run off, and the floor should be well insulated to keep the interior warm and dry.

Placement and Installation of a Hedgehog Nest Box

The placement of the hedgehog nest box is important to ensure that it is safe and accessible to hedgehogs. It is best to place the box in a quiet, secluded area of the garden, away from potential predators such as cats. The box should also be elevated off the ground, as this will help to keep it dry and free from predators. To install the hedgehog nest box, it is simply a matter of securing it to a sturdy post or tree using screws or brackets.

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It is important to remember that hedgehogs are nocturnal animals, and therefore, it is best to leave them undisturbed while they are using the nest box. Regular checks can be made to ensure that the box is in good condition and free from any debris, but it is important to avoid handling the hedgehogs or their nest as this can cause undue stress. By following these guidelines, you can provide hedgehogs with a safe and suitable place to call home, and help to support their survival in the process.

2 Benefits of Providing a Hedgehog Nest Box

Providing a Safe and Secure Environment for Hedgehogs

By providing a hedgehog nest box in your garden, you can play an important role in providing a safe and secure environment for these fascinating creatures. Hedgehogs are threatened by a variety of factors, including habitat loss, road traffic accidents and predation. By offering them a safe place to rest and raise their young, you can help protect hedgehogs and ensure their survival.

Encouraging Hedgehog Population in Your Garden

In addition to providing a safe haven, a hedgehog nest box can also play a role in encouraging hedgehog populations in your area. If you live in an area with a declining hedgehog population, a nest box can provide an important source of habitat and shelter, helping to increase the number of hedgehogs in your garden.

Enhancing Biodiversity in Your Garden

Hedgehogs are important members of the ecosystem and play a crucial role in maintaining balance in the food chain. They feed on a variety of insects and other small creatures, helping to control pest populations and maintain healthy soil. By providing a hedgehog nest box, you can enhance the biodiversity of your garden and support the delicate balance of nature.

Overall, by providing a hedgehog nest box, you can make a positive impact on the lives of these fascinating creatures and the wider ecosystem. So why not consider adding a hedgehog nest box to your garden today and enjoy the many benefits that come with it.

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3 How to Build a Hedgehog Nest Box

Building a hedgehog nest box is a rewarding DIY project that not only provides a safe and secure environment for hedgehogs but also enhances the biodiversity of your garden. If you’re looking to build a hedgehog nest box, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s a step-by-step guide to building a hedgehog nest box, along with essential tools and equipment needed and safety precautions and tips.

Step-by-Step Guide to Building a Hedgehog Nest Box

1. Gather the necessary materials and tools, including a piece of untreated wood, a saw, screws, a drill, and a measuring tape.
2. Cut the wood to the appropriate size, with the base measuring approximately 500mm x 500mm and the sides measuring 350mm x 500mm.
3. Assemble the base, sides, and roof of the nest box, using screws to secure the pieces together.
4. Drill two holes at the front of the nest box, each measuring approximately 100mm x 100mm, for the hedgehogs to enter and exit.
5. Cut a piece of mesh and attach it to the inside of the nest box, covering the holes and creating a protected environment for the hedgehogs.
6. Place the nest box in a suitable location, such as a quiet corner of your garden or near a hedge or bush.
7. Fill the nest box with soft materials, such as dry leaves, straw, or shredded paper, to provide insulation and comfort for the hedgehogs.

Essential Tools and Equipment Needed

– Piece of untreated wood
– Saw
– Screws
– Drill
– Measuring tape
– Mesh
– Soft materials for filling the nest box

Safety Precautions and Tips

– Make sure to use untreated wood, as treated wood can be harmful to hedgehogs.
– When drilling, take care to avoid injury and protect your eyes with goggles.
– Fill the nest box with soft materials before installation, as hedgehogs may be deterred by a hard, empty nest box.
– Place the nest box in a location that is protected from rain and wind, and check the nest box regularly to ensure it remains in good condition.

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Building a hedgehog nest box is a great way to help hedgehogs and enhance the biodiversity of your garden. With a few simple steps, tools, and materials, you can create a safe and comfortable home for these adorable creatures.

4 Cutting the Wood

Marking and Measuring the Wood:
Before cutting any wood, it is essential to measure and mark it accurately. This will ensure that you cut the pieces to the proper dimensions, which will affect the overall appearance and functionality of your project. You can use a tape measure to determine the length of each piece and a pencil to mark the cuts. It is important to double-check your measurements before cutting to avoid waste and the need to start over.

Cutting the Wood to the Proper Dimensions:
Once you have marked and measured the wood, it is time to cut it to the proper dimensions. You can use a hand saw, power saw, or other cutting tool, depending on your experience level and the size of the pieces you need to cut. It is important to use caution when cutting, as saws can be dangerous. Make sure to wear protective gear, such as safety glasses, to protect your eyes from sawdust and debris. It is also a good idea to secure the wood firmly to prevent it from moving during the cutting process.

Sanding the Edges for Smoothness:
Once you have cut the pieces of wood to the proper dimensions, it is time to sand the edges to ensure they are smooth. This is important for two reasons: first, it makes the edges safer to handle, and second, it gives the project a professional appearance. You can use sandpaper or a sanding block to smooth the edges, starting with a rough grit and gradually moving to a finer grit. Be sure to sand in the direction of the grain to avoid scratches and to ensure that the edges are evenly sanded.

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It is important to take your time when cutting and sanding the wood, as this step is critical to the success of your project. By following these steps, you can ensure that the pieces of wood are cut to the proper dimensions and are smooth and ready for assembly.

5 Assembling the Pieces

Positioning and Securing the Bottom Panel
The first step to assembling your hedgehog nest box is positioning and securing the bottom panel. Start by choosing a flat and level surface to work on. Make sure to check for any nails or sharp objects that might be sticking out of the surface. Place the bottom panel on the surface, making sure that it is centered and aligned properly. Use a level to check for any gaps or unevenness in the panel. If necessary, use shims to level the bottom panel.

Attaching the Sides and Back Panel
Next, it’s time to attach the sides and back panel to the bottom panel. Make sure to measure and mark the panels so that they fit properly together. Apply a small amount of wood glue along the edges of the bottom panel, then place the sides and back panel against the bottom panel. Make sure that the edges are aligned and that the panels are straight. Use clamps to secure the panels together while the glue dries.

Installing the Roof and Entrance Hole
Once the glue has dried, you can install the roof and entrance hole. Begin by placing the roof panel over the sides and back panel. Make sure that the roof panel is centered and level. Use a level to check for any gaps or unevenness in the roof panel. Then, use a drill to make a hole in the roof panel that is the proper size for a hedgehog to enter. Make sure that the entrance hole is centered and located near the back panel.

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Assembling the pieces for your hedgehog nest box can seem intimidating, but by following these steps, you can ensure that your nest box is strong, secure, and provides a comfortable and safe environment for hedgehogs. With a little patience and attention to detail, you can build a nest box that will last for many years and provide a wonderful habitat for hedgehogs in your garden.

6 Painting and Finishing

Choosing the Right Paint or Stain

When it comes to painting and finishing, choosing the right paint or stain is crucial. Not all paints and stains are created equal, and each has its own unique properties and benefits. When choosing a paint or stain, consider the environment in which your project will be used. For example, if you’re building an outdoor structure, such as a birdhouse or a shed, you’ll want to choose a paint or stain that’s specifically designed for outdoor use and can withstand the elements.

Applying a Primer Coat

Before applying the final coat of paint or stain, it’s important to apply a primer coat. Primer is designed to help the paint or stain adhere better to the surface, ensuring a more uniform and durable finish. Additionally, primer helps to conceal any imperfections in the surface, such as scratches or dents, resulting in a smoother and more even finish. Be sure to let the primer dry completely before applying the final coat.

Adding the Final Coat of Paint or Stain

Once the primer is dry, it’s time to add the final coat of paint or stain. Make sure to stir the paint or stain thoroughly before use, and be sure to apply the paint or stain evenly, using a paintbrush, roller, or sprayer, depending on the type of project you’re working on and your personal preference. Take your time and be patient when applying the final coat, making sure to avoid drips and runs, and be sure to let the paint or stain dry completely before using or handling the project.

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When it comes to painting and finishing, it’s important to take your time and pay attention to the details, ensuring a high-quality and professional-looking end result.


How big should a hedgehog nesting box be?

A hedgehog nesting box should be 30x20x20 cm. It’s important to provide enough space for the hedgehog to move and turn around comfortably, but also ensuring the box is small enough to retain heat. The entrance hole should be 7 cm in diameter, located on one of the sides of the box, near the bottom to prevent rain from entering. Proper dimensions and specifications of the nesting box will ensure that the hedgehog feels safe and secure.

How do you make a hedgehog nest box?

To make a hedgehog nest box, you will need the following materials:
– A piece of untreated wood that is at least 4mm thick
– A saw
– Sandpaper or a sander
– Screws and a screwdriver
– Roofing felt or shingles
– Silicone sealant

First, you need to cut the piece of wood into the following pieces:
– Two sides (200mm x 400mm)
– A back (200mm x 300mm)
– A floor (200mm x 300mm)
– A roof (400mm x 300mm)

Next, sand the edges and corners of each piece of wood to smooth out any rough spots.

Then, assemble the nest box by screwing the sides onto the back piece, and then screw the floor to the sides and back.

Next, attach the roof to the sides and back, leaving a gap of 50mm between the roof and the back. This gap will serve as the entrance hole for the hedgehogs.

Finally, cover the roof with roofing felt or shingles and seal the edges with silicone sealant to prevent water from getting in.

The finished hedgehog nest box should measure 200mm x 400mm x 300mm and provide a safe and cozy shelter for hedgehogs in your garden. Remember to place the nest box in a secluded and sheltered spot in your garden, away from any potential hazards such as busy roads or predators.

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What is the best nesting material for hedgehogs?

The best nesting material for hedgehogs is dry, clean, and soft materials such as leaves, grass, and hay. Hedgehogs require a comfortable and safe environment to nest in, and these materials provide just that. Avoid using synthetic materials such as polyester or paper, as these may cause harm to the hedgehog. Additionally, it is important to change the nesting material regularly to maintain a clean and hygienic environment for the hedgehog.

What is the minimum size for a hedgehog house?

A hedgehog house, also known as a nest box, should have a minimum size of 30cm x 30cm x 20cm to provide adequate space for hedgehogs to comfortably hibernate and rest. It is important to ensure that the nest box has enough room for a hedgehog to turn around and stretch inside, as well as proper ventilation to maintain a healthy environment.

8 Conclusion

To conclude, building a hedgehog nest box is not only a fun DIY project but also a great way to make a positive impact on the environment and your garden. Providing hedgehogs with a safe and comfortable place to raise their young is crucial to ensuring a healthy and sustainable hedgehog population.

By following hedgehog nest box plans, you are not only helping these fascinating creatures, but also contributing to a more diverse and thriving ecosystem in your backyard. So, don’t hesitate to roll up your sleeves and build a nest box today! You’ll not only enjoy the satisfaction of a job well done, but also play a role in preserving our precious natural heritage for future generations to enjoy.

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