18 Different Types Of Hedgehogs (Including Two New Breeds)

Different Types Of Hedgehogs

When I started reading more about hedgehogs I was so surprised at how many different types of hedgehogs there are in existence.

I knew that there were a few, and that many people tended to keep a particular kind as a house pet, but couldn’t believe how many types of hedgehogs there are, and how widely they are spread across the globe.

When I was researching this information I couldn’t find one article that summarized all of the information I wanted to know about the different types of hedgehogs, so I put this together as a resource for anyone wanting to know more about this.

So how many different types of hedgehogs are there? There are 18 different types of hedgehogs, across 5 groups called genera. These are Atelerix, Erinaceus, Hemiechinus, Mesechinus and Paraechinus. Mesechinus was thought to contain two species, but a new species was discovered, and one thought to be a sub species was reclassified as its own species.

That’s already a lot to digest right? I’ve gone into a ton of detail below about the five different genera, as well as each individual type or breed of hedgehog. Use the quick navigation box below if you are interested in finding out about a particular type of hedgehog. I hope you enjoy reading about all of the different hedgehogs I found!

Different Types Of Hedgehogs

The hedgehog, or to give it its proper family name, Erinaceinae, is a subfamily of the Erinaceidae family, which includes hedgehogs and moonrats. The family Erinaceidae is in the order of Eulipotyphia, which includes hedgehogs, shrews and moles. Many people will not know this, but there are actually 18 different breeds of hedgehogs, split up between 5 larger categories, or genera.

What Are The Different Categories Or Genera of Hedgehogs?

All of the hedgehogs from around the world can be split up into one of 5 larger categories. These categories are called genus (singular) or genera (plural). According to this Wikipedia article  a genus is:

a taxonomic rank used in the biological classification of living and fossil organisms, as well as viruses, in biology. In the hierarchy of biological classification, genus comes above species and below family.

The above quote is important in helping us to understand how and why the 18 different types of hedgehogs are similar in some ways and different in others.

Below I will explain a little more about the 5 different genera of hedgehogs, and which of the different breeds of hedgehogs belongs to each genera, before I go on to talk in more detail about each individual type of hedgehog.

I’ve organised the genera of hedgehogs into alphabetical order. After that each of the different types of hedgehogs will be described in order of the genera they belong to, rather than alphabetically.

Atelerix (African) Hedgehogs

The first of the genera of the hedgehog family we will look at is the Atelerix. Atelerix hedgehogs are found across large parts of Africa.

They can live in grasslands and in the desert too. These hedgehogs are not native to countries such as Britain, but are the most common sold as pets by breeders.

The Atelerix genus of hedgehogs can be split into four separate breeds of hedgehog. These are:

  • Four-toed hedgehog (Atelerix albiventris)
  • North-African hedgehog (Atelerix algirus)
  • Southern-African Hedghog (Atelerix frontalis)
  • Somali Hedgehog (Atelerix sclateri)

Erinaceus (European, Middle Eastern, Russian and North Chinese)Hedgehogs

The second of the genera of hedgehogs is the Erinaceus. You wild find these hedgehogs spread out across the world in a much more diverse spread than with the Atelerix.

The Erinaceus hedgehog can be found in parts of Europe, throughout the Middle East, into Russia and parts of North China.

You can also find some of these hedgehogs in New Zealand. Hedgehogs are not native to New Zealand, and they are there simply because they were introduced by humans.

These were introduced in the late 1800s by colonists who settled in New Zealand. They were originally brought to remind them of their homeland whilst acclimatising to their new surroundings.

Much later they were introduced throughout new Zealand as a way of controlling the number of insects such as slugs and snails.

There is widespread feeling throughout New Zealand, particularly among conservationists, that the introduction of the hedgehog has ultimately not been a good thing. This is because they pose a threat to a number of species of animals and insects in New Zealand.

In general Erinaceus hedgehogs tend to be roughly 20-30 cm in length and weigh anywhere between 400g and 1200g.

The Erinaceus genus of hedgehogs can be split into four separate breeds of hedgehogs:

  • Amur hedgehog (Erinaceus amurensis)
  • Southern White-Breasted hedgehog (Erinaceus concolor)
  • European hedgehog (Erinaceus europaeus)
  • Northern White-Breasted hedgehog (Erinaceus roumanicus)

Hemiechinus (Central and South Asian)Hedgehogs

The Hemiechinus hedgehog is native to both Central and South East Asia. The Hemiechinus breeds of hedgehogs can both be distinguished by their long ears. They are fairly small in comparison to some of the other hedgehogs we will look at, somewhere in between around 12cm and 17cm.

They are nocturnal creatures, and can often be found living in burrows that they either find and choose to stay in, or make for themselves.

The Hemiechinus genus of hedgehogs can be split into just two distinct breeds:

  • Long-Eared hedgehog (Hemiechinus auritus)
  • Indian Long-Eared hedgehog (Hemiechinus collaris)

Mesechinus (East Asian) Hedgehogs

Hedgehogs from the Mesechinus genus can be found in areas from Upper Mongolia to the Upper Basin in Russia. They can also be found in areas in North Eastern and Northern China.

This genus of hedgehog was previously split into two distinct breeds, but fairly recently a new breed has been added to this list. The hedgehogs found in Mt. Gaoligong have been classified as a new breed, namely the Gaoligong hedgehog.

Researchers also classified the Small-Toothed Forest hedgehog as a breed in its own right, rather than as part of either the Daurian or Hugh’s hedgehog breeds.

After this discovery and reclassification, the four breeds of Mesechinus hedgehogs are:

  • Daurian hedgehog (Mesechinus dauuricus)
  • Hugh’s hedgehog (Mesechinus hughi)
  • Gaoligong Forest hedgehog (Mesechinus wangi)
  • Small-Toothed Forest hedgehog (Mesechinus miodon)

Paraechinus (North African, Middle Eastern and South Asian) Hedgehogs

The fifth group of hedgehogs is the Paraechinus genus. These hedgehogs are native to North Africa, parts of the Middle East, and South Asia.

This genus of hedgehogs contains four distinct and separate species, which makes up the final four on our list. These are:

  • Desert hedgehog (Paraechinus aethiopicus)
  • Brandt’s hedgehog (Paraechinus hypomelas)
  • Indian hedgehog (Paraechinus micropus)
  • Bare-Bellied hedgehog (Paraechinus nudiventris)

What Are the Different Types Of Hedgehogs?

So as I said above, the hedgehog subfamily, or to give it its proper name the Erinacienae family, has five genera as discussed above. These five genera can be split up into a further 18 different types of hedgehogs.

Below I will give a brief explanation of each of the different types of hedgehogs, including where you might find them, what they eat, their appearance and their main threats.

1. Four-Toed Hedgehog or African Pygmy Hedgehog

African Pygmy Hedgehog

The first of the different types of hedgehogs is the Four-Toed hedgehog, which comes from the Atelerix genera. The actual species name for this hedgehog is Atelerix albivertis. However, it seems to be more widely known as the African Pygmy hedgehog and sometimes the White-Bellied hedgehog.

The common name of the Four-Toed hedgehog comes from the fact that they only have four toes on their back feet.

Where Does A Four-Toed Hedgehog Live?

The four-toed hedgehog is part of the Atelerix family of hedgehogs. These are native to large parts of Africa, including Gambia, Senegal, Somalia and Mozambique.

This covers a massive area. Due to the large numbers of Four-Toed hedgehogs, these are classified as least concern by the International Union for Conservation of Nature.

Their natural habitat is savannah or grassy areas. They largely avoid forested areas! This is because it prefers to shelter in dry areas, that are largely rocky or grassy.

Four-Toed hedgehogs are one of the most common types bred and sold as pets. Although this is legal, it is not ideal for this type of animal. Its natural habitat is in desert and grassy areas of hot countries, and keeping them in captivity does not meet their needs.

What Does A Four-Toed Hedgehog Look Like?

The Four-Toed hedgehog is roughly between 5 to 12 inches in length, which is the same as 13cm to 30cm. The female of this breed is normally larger than the male.

Like all hedgehogs, they have short legs, a short tail, and a long nose. As I said, the hedgehog gets its name from the fact that it only has four toes on its back foot.

In terms of color, this can vary greatly. However, a normal Four-Toed hedgehog in the wild will have brown or dark grey spines, and these will have white colored tips. They have grey fur on their body, with brown fur around the muzzle. They usually have a white face, legs and abdomen.

What Does A Four-Toed Hedgehog eat?

In its natural habitat, the Four-Toed hedgehog will forage through the night for a variety of different foods. They are nocturnal, so will come out at night to eat. Just some of the things in a Four-Toed hedgehogs diet will include:

  • Snails
  • Spiders
  • Insects
  • Grubs
  • Some plants

Which Animals Prey On A Four-Toed hedgehog?

If we are talking about the Four-Toed hedgehogs natural environment, its main predators here are:

  • Eagle owls
  • Jackals
  • Hyenas
  • Honey Badgers

2. North African Hedgehog

North African Hedgehog
Galanthus, CC BY 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The North African hedgehog is the second of the different types of hedgehogs we will look at, and also the second on the list from the Atelerix genera. The species name for this hedgehog is Atelerix algirus. It is often also referred to as the Algerian hedgehog.

Where Does A North African Hedgehog Live?

This hedgehog is often known as an Algerian hedgehog because there a lot of them in Algeria. They are also native to Libya, Malta, Morocco, Tunisia and even Spain. It can also be found in other European countries too, although it is less likely that they are native to these countries, and more likely that they were introduced by humans.

This type of hedgehog prefers more forested areas, and finds it difficult to survive in desert areas. In European countries, this type of hedgehog can often be seen in gardens and in parks.

What Does A North African Hedgehog Look Like?

The North African hedgehog is larger than the other different types of hedgehogs in this genera, but it is still smaller then the European hedgehog. It measures roughly 20 to 25cm in length.

Being bigger than the other African hedgehogs, it has longer legs, and can run a lot faster.

In terms of color, the North African hedgehog has a light colored face and spikes, with brown legs and head. The underneath of this hedgehog can either be brown or white. It has rather large ears.

What Does A North African Hedgehog eat?

North African hedgehogs are nocturnal, so will come out at night in search of food. They will eat from a wide range of insects, small animals and vegetation including:

  • Molluscs
  • Worms
  • Insects
  • Small birds
  • Arthropods
  • Fruit
  • Nuts

Which Animals Prey On A North African Hedgehog?

Birds seem to be the most common type of predator for this type of hedgehog. In particular the Eurasian eagle owl is a major threat to this type of hedgehog. In some parts of Africa they can be killed by humans and used as food.

3. Southern African Hedgehog

Southern African Hedgehog
SumandaMaritz, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Southern African hedgehog is the third of the different types of hedgehogs in the Atelerix genus. Its species name is Atelerix frontalis.

Where Does A Southern African Hedgehog Live?

Ok so the name probably give it away here. Yes, the Southern African hedgehog is native to parts of Southern Africa. In particular it can be found in Angola, Botswana, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe to name but a few places.

Although they can survive in most places, they prefer to live in bushy areas and grasslands. They will make homes underneath piles of leaves or in holes. Southern African hedgehogs are nocturnal, so will come out of these places at night in search of food.

What Does A Southern African Hedgehog Look Like?

This type of hedgehog is distinguishable from most other breeds of hedgehogs due to a large band of white across its forehead. This comes down from the forehead over the shoulder and onto the front legs.

The rest of the hedgehogs face, legs and tail are either dark brown or dark grey, and the underneath can vary massively in color from black through to white.

In terms of length, the Southern African hedgehog is around 22 cm long

What Does A Southern African Hedgehog eat?

The Southern African hedgehogs diet is largely the same as its North African counterpart. It is nocturnal, so will come out at night to find food. This type of hedgehog will typically eat:

  • Molluscs
  • Worms
  • Crickets
  • Beetles
  • Grasshoppers
  • Slugs
  • Small birds
  • Arthropods
  • Fruit
  • Roots
  • Leaves

Which Animals Prey On A Southern African Hedgehog?

The most common predators for this type of hedgehog are all kinds of domestic dogs, birds of prey such as eagles, and believe it or not humans.

In Southern Africa many people believe that the smoke from burning their spines can keep spirits away. They are also hunted by humans for food.

4. Somali Hedgehog

Somali Hedgehog
Blackfang89, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The last of the different types of hedgehogs from the Atelerix genus is the Somali hedgehog. The species name for this particular hedgehog is Atelerix sclateri. This is one of the lesser known hedgehogs, and for this reason there is not too much information available about it.

Where Does A Somali Hedgehog Live?

You guessed it. The Somali hedgehog is native to Somalia. No real surprises there. It lives mostly in grasslands and in other more open kinds of habitats.

Like most other hedgehogs, they are solitary creatures, and are nocturnal. This means that they will largely live alone, and come out at night in search of food.

What Does A Somali Hedgehog Look Like?

In comparison to the Four-Toed hedgehog discussed earlier, the Somali hedgehog has 5 toes on its back feet. Apart from this, they are fairly similar in appearance to the Four-Toed hedgehog.

They have dark brown quills all over their spines. The underneath of the Somali hedgehog is white, and it has brown fur on its rear.

5. Amur Hedgehog

Amur Hedgehog

The Amur hedgehog is the first in the list of different types of hedgehogs from the Erinaceus genus. Its species name is Erinaceus amurensis.

Where Does An Amur Hedgehog Live?

The Amur hedgehog is native to parts of Russia, China and the Korean Peninsula. The hedgehogs name, Amur, comes from the fact that it is most notably native to a place called Amur Blast, which is in the Far East of Russia.

In China it is predominantly known for living in Manchuria. You will usually find it living in grasslands and on the edges of forests.

What Does An Amur Hedgehog Look Like?

An Amur hedgehog is very similar in appearance to the European hedgehog. You could in fact be forgiven for mistaking one for the other. It is slightly bigger than a European hedgehog, usually somewhere in between 16cm and 29cm.

In terms of color, there are largely two different kinds of Amur hedgehogs. They are usually either white or a light brown color mixed with yellow. This makes them look much lighter than other hedgehogs.

What Does An Amur  Hedgehog Eat?

Like most of the other different types of hedgehogs in this list, the Amur hedgehog is nocturnal and omnivorous. This means it comes out at night to look for any food it can find.

The types of food you might find an Amur hedgehog feasting on can include:

  • Earthworms
  • Centipedes
  • Snails
  • Mice
  • Frogs

Which Animals Prey On An Amur Hedgehog?

According to some sources, the Chinese and Russians can’t agree on exactly which animals prey on Amur hedgehogs. Some Chinese sources claim that an animal called a Sable regularly kills and east hedgehogs. Some Russian sources, however, dispute this.

6. Southern White-Breasted Hedgehog

Southern White Breasted Hedgehog
Nevit Dilmen, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The next in the list of different types of hedgehogs is the Southern White-Breasted hedgehog. This hedgehog is from the Erinaceus genera, and its species name is Erinaceus concolor. It also goes by another couple of names. These are White-Bellied hedgehogs and White-Chested hedgehogs.

Where Does A Southern White-Breasted Hedgehog Live?

The Southern White-breasted hedgehog is native to South West Asia. This breed of hedgehog will not burrow underground, and much prefers staying in nests made from leaves and grass.

Like all hedgehogs they are solitary creatures, and the Southern White-Breasted hedgehog will build nests in secluded places.

What Does A Southern White-Breasted Hedgehog Look Like?

This hedgehog is very similar in appearance to the European hedgehog. The most notable difference is the white spot you can see on the Southern White-Breasted hedgehogs chest. Their spikes appear to be brown in color, and they have a much lighter face.

7. European Hedgehog

European Hedgehog
© Michael Gäbler / Wikimedia Commons

The European hedgehog is the third of the different types of hedgehogs to belong to the Erinaceus genus. It’s species name is Erinaceus europaeus.

It is also widely known as the West European hedgehog and the Common hedgehog. The latter name comes from the fact that is an often spotted visitor to the gardens of European countries.

Where Does A European Hedgehog Live?

Like I said, the European hedgehog can often be seen in and around the gardens of people living in many European countries. This includes great Britain, Italy and Scandinavia to name a few.

They can survive in a number of environments, but prefer woodland and grassland areas. However, they have become adept at living in more urban areas, and have found ways to survive this.

What Does A European Hedgehog Look Like?

European hedgehogs are around 13 to 15 inches in length. There is not too much variation in terms of color between almost all European hedgehogs. They are usually brown, and have fur on their faces and their chest and stomachs.

On rare occasions you can spot a Leucistic or blonde hedgehog. They can have an albino type appearance, although they are not albino. Recessive genes in some European hedgehogs make them appear this color. These can be seen most often on the Channel Islands.

What Does A European Hedgehog Eat?

European hedgehogs have a very similar diet to many of the other hedgehogs we have looked at. In fact you will find that they all largely eat the same kind of things really. Due to the fact that these hedgehogs are often found in gardens, they will regularly be fed by homeowners.

So to add to the list of food they will find in the wild, there are some other slightly more usual things that they will eat too. Some of the things European hedgehogs eat include:

  • Slugs
  • Earthworms
  • Caterpillars
  • Beetles
  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Cat Food
  • Dog Food
  • Hedgehog Food

Which Animals Prey On A European Hedgehog?

There are quite a few animals that prey on the European hedgehog, and this is just one of the dangers they face in more urban areas.

In many areas the badger is the most common predator of European hedgehogs. They have very thick skin and sharp claws. They are able to unroll a hedgehog and eat it without much of a problem.

8. Northern White-Breasted Hedgehog

Northern White Breasted Hedgehog
Михайло Колесніков (Mikhail Kolesnikov), CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The last of the different types of hedgehogs in the Erinaceus genus is the Northern White-Breasted hedgehog. The species name for this type of hedgehog is Erinaceus roumanicus.

Where Does A Northern White-Breasted Hedgehog Live?

Northern White-Breasted hedgehogs live in areas spanning a huge distance. They can be found in Western countries such as Poland and Austria and in the south, where they can be seen on the Greek Islands.

Northern White-Breasted hedgehogs can also be seen in the East in parts of Russia and Siberia. You will often find them in parks and gardens.

What Does A Northern White-Breasted Hedgehog Look Like?

This is another of the different types of hedgehogs that is similar in appearance to the European hedgehog. There is one major difference that will help you distinguish between the two. The Northern White-Breasted hedgehog has a white chest, hence the name!

What Does A Northern White-Breasted Hedgehog Eat?

The diet of a Northern White-Breasted Hedgehog is very similar to that of the European hedgehog. It will eat bugs and insects it finds whilst foraging at night. It will also eat foods left out for it, such as cat food, dog food and special hedgehog food.

9. Long Eared-Hedgehog

Long Eared Hedgehog
Yuriy75, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

So on to the first of our two different types of hedgehogs from the Hemiechinus genus. The Long-Eared hedgehogs species name is Hemiechinus auritus, and no guesses for where it gets its name!

Where Does A Long-Eared Hedgehog Live?

The Long-Eared hedgehog is native to many parts of Central Asia, and can also be found in some Middle Eastern countries too. They much prefer to live in moderate climates not liking it too hot or too cold! They will live in burrows which they will dig under bushes for protection.

Long-Eared hedgehogs can be found in desert areas, in sheltered forest areas and also in more urban areas too.

What Does A Long-Eared Hedgehog Look Like?

As the name suggests, these hedgehogs have big ears. Comparatively speaking anyway that is. These extra large ears do help them by giving them an excellent sense of hearing as well as a great sense of smell.

It is smaller than the European hedgehog, with a combined length of around 12cm. This hedgehogs spines are dark towards the bottom of the spikes, with lighter tips on the top. They have hairy feet on the top, but the soles of their feet are bare.

What Does A Long-Eared Hedgehog Eat?

Like most of its cousins, the Long-Eared hedgehog is an insectivore. Around 70 to 75% of its diet is made up by insects. They can also eat some invertebrates too.

They can do this by curling themselves up into a ball to protect themselves while they continue to eat their prey. Some of the things a Long-Eared hedgehog will eat include:

  • Slugs
  • Snails
  • Beetles
  • Caterpillars
  • Millipedes
  • Eggs
  • Snakes (I know!)

Which Animals Prey On A Long-Eared Hedgehog?

Long-Eared hedgehogs mix up their game when it comes to protecting themselves. Most of the other different types of hedgehogs we have looked at curl themselves up into a ball to protect themselves from predators.

While some of these other hedgehogs can and do run away, the Long-Eared hedgehog is much more likely to do so.

They have much shorter spikes than most, and will often either run away, or run towards predators baring their spikes. They are much faster runners than some of the other hedgehogs we have seen.

The biggest threat to a Long-Eared hedgehog from predators comes in the shape of the Eurasian eagle owl, and also the Pharaoh eagle owl.

10. Indian Long-Eared Hedgehog

Indian Long Eared Hedgehog
Ruchir594, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The second of the different types of hedgehogs that belongs to the Hemiechinus genus is the Indian Long-Eared hedgehog. The species name for this hedgehog is Hemiechinus collaris. It is smaller in size in comparison to the Long-Eared hedgehog.

Where Does An Indian Long-Eared Hedgehog Live?

The Indian Long-Eared hedgehog can be found in parts of Northern India and in Pakistan. It is capable of living in a variety of weather conditions.

In the summer it lives in extremely high temperatures, and in the winter it experiences pretty cold weather conditions. The Indian Long-Eared hedgehog lives in fairly desert-like terrains.

What Does An Indian Long-Eared Hedgehog Look Like?

As I said, the Indian Long-Eared hedgehog is smaller than the Long-Eared hedgehog. It is generally less than 17cm in length, and weighs anywhere between 200g and 500g. This hedgehog is usually dark in color, and as the name suggest has comparatively long ears.

What Does An Indian Long-Eared Hedgehog Eat?

Living in desert conditions, food sources are not that diverse for the Indian Long-Eared hedgehog. It is an insectivorous and nocturnal creature. It will come out at night in search of food, mostly living on the insects available to it. There is not much water where it lives, so much of its hydration is taken from the food it consumes.

11. Daurian Hedgehog

The Daurian hedgehog is the first in the list of different types of hedgehogs from the Mesechinus genus. The species name for this hedgehog is Mesechinus dauuricus. Its name comes from one of the regions it is native to.

Where Does A Daurian Hedgehog Live?

The Daurian hedgehog is native mostly to Russia and Northern Mongolia. Most notably it is know for living in the Transbaikal area of Russia, which is sometimes referred to as Dauria.

This is where the hedgehogs name comes from. The Daurian hedgehog has a protected status in these countries, due to its dwindling numbers.

It tends to inhabit fairly grass areas, sometimes referred to as steppes. It inhabits fairly rocky areas, probably providing it greater protection from predators.

What Does A Daurian Hedgehog Look Like?

The Daurian hedgehog is not as small as some of the other hedgehogs we have looked at. It can grow to between 15cm and 20cm, and can weigh somewhere in the region of 600g. It has dark brown quills, which become lighter towards the top.

Their faces and chest are covered with a lighter colored fur. The abdomen is usually covered with a darker colored fur.

What Does A Daurian Hedgehog Eat?

Daurian hedgehogs tend to feed on a variety of insects, like many of the other hedgehog breeds we have looked at. Some of the foods you can expect a Daurian hedgehog to eat are:

  • Ants
  • Beetles
  • Eggs
  • Some amphibians
  • Mice

Which Animals Prey On A Daurian Hedgehog?

The Daurian hedgehog can fall prey to a wide variety of animals. This is possibly one of the reasons it has been granted a protected status in the areas it inhabits. Some of the animals that may prey on the Daurian hedgehog include:

  • Eagles and other birds of prey
  • Foxes
  • Wolves
  • Badgers
  • Ferrets

12. Hugh’s Hedgehog

The second of the different types of hedgehogs from the Mesechinus genus is the Hugh’s hedgehog. The species name for this type of hedgehog is Mesechinus hughi.

Where Does A Hugh’s Hedgehog Live?

The Hugh’s hedgehog can mostly be found in Central China and in Manchuria. They much prefer to live in open areas, rather than in forest areas. They like to be in dry steppe, which are large areas of unforested grasslands. If these are not readily available, they will find shelter in forest areas.

What Does A Hugh’s Hedgehog Look Like?

The Hugh’s hedgehog has brown quills that become lighter towards the tip. They are smaller than many of the other breeds of hedgehogs we have looked at.

They have brown fur around their faces and shoulders. Their nose appears to be shorter and less pointed than many other breeds of hedgehogs.

What Does A Hugh’s Hedgehog Eat?

The Hugh’s hedgehog has one surprising difference from many of the other hedgehogs on my list. Most other hedgehogs are nocturnal, sleeping throughout the day, and choosing to come out for food at night. this is a great way to avoid predators.

The Hugh’s hedgehog is different in that it can often be seen out during the day foraging for food. It is an insectivore, and it feeds mostly on various types of insects. It will eat some vegetation too.

13. Gaoligong Forest Hedgehog

The species name for this type of hedgehog is Mesechinus wangi. Previously it had been thought that there were only two different types of hedgehogs in the Mesechinus genus. These were the Daurian and the Hugh’s hedgehogs.

The Gaoligong was discovered and classified as another member of the Mesechinus genus. We will look at the fourth  one next.

Where Does A Gaoligong Forest Hedgehog Live?

The Gaoligong forest hedgehog is thought to only live in one very specific region. It was discovered on the slopes of Mt. Gaoligong, which is in the province of Yunnan.

This species of hedgehog has only been found in the Gaoligongshan Nature Reserve, living in a subtropical evergreen forest. This is very high up, at an elevation level higher than 2200 metres.

What Does A Gaoligong Forest Hedgehog Look Like?

The Gaoligong Forest hedgehog is similar in nature to both the Daurian and Hugh’s hedgehogs.

The major difference between these two and the Gaoligong Forest hedgehog is the distinct colorful patterns on its spine. Researchers also found the presence of supernumerary M4 Teeth, normally only present in humans and some ape species.

What Does A Gaoligong Forest Hedgehog Eat?

As this type of hedgehog is an entirely new discovery, not much is known about it. This means that we do not really know exactly what it likes to eat, or what likes to eat it too!

14. Small-Toothed Forest Hedgehog

The Small-Toothed Forest hedgehog is another interesting entry in our list of different types of hedgehogs. The species name for this type of hedgehog is Mesechinus miodon. Again very little appears to be known about this species of hedgehog.

At around the same time as the discovery of the Gaoligong Forest hedgehog, the Small-Toothed Forest hedgehog was reclassified.

Previously it was thought to belong to either the Daurian or Hugh’s species of hedgehogs, as a sub species. It is now recognised as a species of hedgehog in its own right. This brings the number of species of hedgehog in the Mesechinus genus to four, rather than two.

Where Does A Small-Toothed Forest Hedgehog Live?

Not too much is know about this breed of hedgehog. As up until recently it was thought to be a sub species of either the Daurian or Hugh’s hedgehog, little is written about this particular type of hedgehog.

As both the Daurian hedgehog and Hugh’s hedgehog are native to Central China, Manchuria and parts of Russia, it would be safe to assume that the Small-Toothed Forest hedgehog will be native to these same areas.

15. Desert Hedgehog

Desert Hedgehog
Levi Clancy, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The desert hedgehog is the first we will look at from the Paraechinus genus. The species name for this type of hedgehog is Paraechinus aethiopicus. It is an extremely small hedgehog, perhaps one of the smallest you will come across.

Where Does A Desert Hedgehog Live?

Desert hedgehogs are largely native to some parts of North Africa, and also some Middle Eastern countries too.

As the name would suggest, their favorite kind of environment is the desert, which for them is going to be largely dry, without much vegetation. They are nocturnal, and will look for protection during the day by staying close to rocks and cliffs.

What Does A Desert Hedgehog Look Like?

A desert hedgehog is the smallest of all hedgehogs. They can be as small as 14cm, but can grow up to 28cm at their biggest, although they do tend to be on the smaller side of this scale.

The quills on the back of the Desert hedgehog are largely the same color as the Four-Toed hedgehog. These will be brown or grey with white tips. You can mostly recognize this type of hedgehog by the dark muzzle and light band of color across its face.

What Does A Desert Hedgehog Eat?

The Desert hedgehog is limited by the terrain it finds itself in. As such you may find that although its diet has some similarities with some of the other hedgehogs we have looked at, it will also eat some fairly different things too.

For example, it is not uncommon for Desert hedgehogs to eat scorpions. They will take off their sting before eating them for safety reasons. Other things that Desert hedgehogs will eat include:

  • Insects
  • Invertebrates
  • Birds Eggs
  • Forgs
  • Scorpions
  • Snakes

Which Animals Prey On A Desert Hedgehog?

Although a Desert hedgehog is small, it does not mean it is indefensible. It has much longer spikes than some of the other hedgehogs we have seen, and is quite tough. It has to be in the fairly exposed types of terrain it lives in.

The main predator threats to the Desert hedgehog are various birds of prey. These include:

  • Owls
  • Eagles

16. Brandt’s Hedgehog

Brandt's Hedgehog
Shah Jahan, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Brandt’s hedgehog is the second from the Paraechinus genus. The species name for this breed of hedgehog is Paraechinus hypomelas. It was first discovered by Johann Friedrich von Brandt, which explains where the unusual name for this hedgehog comes from.

Where Does A Brandt’s Hedgehog Live?

The Brandt’s hedgehog is native to parts of the Middle East and Central Asia. You will usually find it in desert areas, mountains and some grasslands. It prefers dry living conditions. It will take shelter under things like rocks, but is able to tunnel if this is needed to stay safe.

What Does A Brandt’s Hedgehog Look Like?

The Brandt’s hedgehog is roughly the same size as the European hedgehog. It will grow to roughly 25cm in length. It is has either dark brown or black quills and face. It has very large ears, and in some photos the face can even look quite like a bat!

What Does A Brandt’s Hedgehog Eat?

Like most other hedgehogs, a large part of the Brandt’s hedgehogs diet is made up of a number of insects. It will also eat other things too such as snakes, toads, eggs and probably any type of vegetation it comes across.

Which Animals Prey On A Brandt’s Hedgehog?

Living where it does, the main predators for the Brandt’s hedgehog will be various birds of prey. This particular type of hedgehog is a fast runner in comparison to some of the other hedgehogs we have seen.

Although it will curl up into a ball for protection, the Brandt’s hedgehog will also run at predators and jump towards them. They will try to injure them with their spikes.

17. Indian Hedgehog

Indian Hedgehog
User:AshLin, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Indian hedgehog is the third of the different types of hedgehogs belonging to the Paraechinus genus. The species name for this hedgehog is Paraechinus micropus. The name Indian hedgehog comes from the fact that it is native to India.

Where Does An Indian Hedgehog Live?

Like I said, the Indian hedgehog is native to India, and it can also be found in parts of Pakistan too. Its preferred living environment is in sandy desert areas, but it can be found in other environments too.

What Does An Indian Hedgehog Look Like?

The Indian hedgehog has a very distinctive look. At first glance you could be mistaken for thinking it is a racoon. I actually think it looks really cute.

In color it is mostly dark brown, with some lighter patches of brown too. It has a short tail and head, with a long nose and big ears.

The face is dark, with a white top, and can often have spots or patches on it. It is this that makes the Indian hedgehog look quite like a racoon.

What Does An Indian Hedgehog Eat?

An Indian hedgehog does not hibernate like many other hedgehogs do. It is able to slow down its metabolism when it cannot find food. I wish i could do that! It has quite a wide diet, and this will include:

  • Various insects
  • Toads
  • Frogs
  • Birds Eggs
  • Snakes
  • Scorpions

Which Animals Prey On An Indian Hedgehog?

The Indian hedgehog is a relatively fast runner, and like most it will curl into a ball and use its spikes to protect itself. There are quite a few predators that will happily try to eat the Indian hedgehog, including:

  • Foxes
  • Indian grey mongooses
  • Rock-horned owls

18. Bare-Bellied Hedgehog

So to the last of the different types of hedgehogs we will look at. This is the Bare-Bellied hedgehog. From the Paraechinus genus, the species name for this hedgehog is Paraechinus nudiventris.

It is also sometimes referred to as the Madras hedgehog. It was once thought to be extremely rare or even extinct, but it has since been discovered that there are in fact more in existence than was first thought. They are still however, fairly rare.

Where Does A Bare-Bellied Hedgehog Live?

The Bare-Bellied hedgehog is native to South Eastern India. It has also been found in a South Western region of India known as Kerala.

It prefers to live in dry conditions and can be found in jungle type lands and rocky areas.

What Does A Bare-Bellied Hedgehog Look Like?

The Bare-Bellied hedgehog is usually around 14cm to 25cm in length including the head and body. The tail is around 1cm to 3cm long. There is not a great deal much more known about this type of hedgehog. This is in large part due to the fact that is extremely rare, thought to be extinct.

Summing Up

So there you have it. An absolutely huge list of the different types of hedgehogs you can find across the globe. I found 18 types of hedgehogs, split across five groups or genera.

Previously it was thought that there were 16 breeds of hedgehogs, but due to a new discovery and reclassification we now have 18.

If you want to add anything to this article, or have any questions, then please leave a comment below. Thanks for reading.

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