Fun Amur Hedgehog Facts For Kids

Aabir Basu
Jan 31, 2024 By Aabir Basu
Originally Published on Sep 02, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Fact-checked by Gowri Rao
These Amur hedgehog facts are sure to surprise you!
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Age: 3-18
Read time: 6.5 Min

Hedgehogs are well-known are easily recognizable for their spines. Unlike a porcupine, these sharp spines cannot be removed from the body of a hedgehog and remain throughout its life, only detaching when the animal is under great duress or diseased. The name hedgehog has a simple etymology: the animal is known to frequent hedges, and often makes a pig-like snorting/grunting noise when foraging. The Amur hedgehog (Erinaceus amurensis), also called the Manchurian hedgehog, is very similar in physical appearance and general behavior to the European hedgehog, with the most marked difference between the two being the more lightly colored hue of the Amur hedgehog. The Amur hedgehog is called so since it is native to the Russian state of Amur Oblast. Apart from this state, its habitat also stretches across to Primorye in Russia, as well as Manchuria in China, leading to its alternative name. Finally, the Amur hedgehog is found across the Korean Peninsula. Like other species of hedgehog, the Manchurian hedgehog can live almost its entire life alone, with its only interaction with other individuals of its species being during mating season. The Amur hedgehog is threatened only by natural predators like hawks, eagles, foxes, and ferrets, meaning its habitat is largely unaffected by human activity. This is definitely to some degree due to the large range of geographic settings a hedgehog is comfortable in, from moist forests to deserts!

If you go on to enjoy this article on the Amur hedgehog, make sure to check out our facts pages on the African pygmy hedgehog and the European hedgehog.

Amur Hedgehog Interesting Facts

What type of animal is an Amur hedgehog?

The Amur hedgehog (Erinaceus amurensis) is a species of hedgehog.

What class of animal does an Amur hedgehog belong to?

Amur hedgehogs belong to the biological class Mammalia, meaning they give birth to live offspring and breastfeed them in their youth.

How many Amur hedgehogs are there in the world?

While the exact number of Amur hedgehogs in the world is not known, their habitat is currently not threatened by human activity and is thus known to be found abundantly in the wilds of its habitat.

Where does an Amur hedgehog live?

Amur hedgehogs are found across eastern Russia, China, and the two Koreas.

What is an Amur hedgehog's habitat?

The Amur hedgehog is known to live in several different types of habitat, including grasslands, lowlands, valleys, forest edges, and woodlands.

Who do Amur hedgehogs live with?

Amur hedgehogs are extremely solitary creatures and live alone for nearly all their lives.

How long does an Amur hedgehog live?

The average observed lifespan of Amur hedgehogs in captivity is around eight years, and it is not known if this is different from its lifespan in the wild.

How do they reproduce?

The precise mating rituals of Amur hedgehogs have not been studied specifically, with most assuming they are identical to other hedgehogs. During mating season, the male hedgehog circles a female for hours on end, in what is known as the hedgehog carousel. When the hedgehogs finally mate, the female flattens her spine to allow the male to mount her and the two engage in copulation. After a gestation period of around 40 days, the female gives birth to around four or five hoglets. The mother hedgehog is known to often eat her hoglets if she is disturbed with them or if they are stillborn, meaning more often than not, only two or three hoglets actually reach adulthood.

What is their conservation status?

The Amur hedgehog is a species of Least Concern according to the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened Species.

Amur Hedgehog Fun Facts

What does an Amur hedgehog look like?

Like any other hedgehog, the Manchurian hedgehog's head, back, and posterior are covered with prickly spines, also called quills, which can either be whitish-yellow entirely, or brown at the base and tip and light brown in the middle. These protect the small creatures from many predatory animals looking to prey on them. The natural defense mechanism of any hedgehog is to curl up tightly in a ball such that only its sharp spines are exposed. The quills are strengthened by the protein keratin so that they will never fall off a healthy hedgehog, unlike those of a porcupine, which can easily be detached from its body. The Amurian hedgehog species, in particular, receives its overall lightly colored appearance almost entirely due to its spines. The underside of its body is covered in far softer and slightly darker fur, not dissimilar to that seen in Chinese hamsters.

The Amur hedgehog's spines can either be pale yellow or light brown in color.

*Please note that this is an image of a Northern white-breasted hedgehog. If you have an image of an Amur hedgehog, let us know at hello@kidadl.com.

How cute are they?

Hedgehogs are extremely cute creatures, despite their prickliness. They are often kept as pets in homes, and this is also true for the Manchurian hedgehog. To most people, they hold the same appeal that any hamster does, with the only major difference between the two animals as pets being their slightly different sizes and of course, the spines on the hedgehog.

How do they communicate?

Hedgehogs are mostly vocal communicators and use a variety of sounds like grunts, screeches, squeals, and growls to convey information and social status to other individuals, during the few times in its life it comes across one.

How big is an Amur hedgehog?

Adult Amur hedgehogs grow to around 10 in (25 cm) in length, meaning they are more than four times larger than Roborovski dwarf hamsters, and nearly one and a half times bigger than the Syrian hamster.

How fast can an Amur hedgehog run?

Despite the fact that Sonic the Hedgehog can reach breakneck speeds, Amur hedgehogs can only sprint at around 4 mph (6.5 kph), which is actually surprisingly quick when you see it happen in reality.

How much does an Amur hedgehog weigh?

Adult Amur hedgehogs weigh in the range of 21-35 oz (600- 1000 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

Male hedgehogs are called boars, while females are called sows. As a result, males and females of this species can be called Amur boars and Amur sows, respectively.

What would you call a baby Amur hedgehog?

A baby hedgehog is called a hoglet (and is extremely cute!), so the young of this species can be referred to as an Amur hoglet.

What do they eat?

Amur hedgehogs are largely insectivorous in nature, eating worms, ticks, mites, fleas, beetles, crickets, snails, and a wide variety of other creepy crawlies. They also engage in heated battles with snakes, and are eaten by them or eat them.

Are they poisonous?

No, Amur hedgehogs do not produce any poisonous toxins, just like any other species of hedgehog. Of course, their spines are often artificially poisoned to convert them into lethal weapons-in pop culture, that is!

Would they make a good pet?

No, Hedgehogs are not allowed to be kept as pets.

Did you know...

Amur hedgehogs are able to procreate and have babies just eight weeks after their birth! This is an especially short maturity period considering their eight-year-long lifespans.

Do hedgehogs attack humans?

While this is possible, it is extremely rare for a hedgehog to attack a human. They will bite your fingers if they are an extremely young hoglet that has never breastfed, mistaking it for a source of food. Their spines pose hardly any risk to humans, with the only way they can break skin being if you actively try to push hard against it. Otherwise, hedgehogs can not only be touched but also held by us with ease.

Are hedgehogs blind?

Hoglets are born blind, and the protective membrane around their eyes that makes it so eventually dries up and falls off as it matures. However, even after this, their eyesight is quite poor, with the vision distinction being only up to the vague outlines of objects, and vision color is only a few shades of brown and cream. As such, their primary mode of navigation is actually their sense of smell, with their hearing helping them locate threats.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! For more relatable content, check out these swamp rabbit facts and stoat facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our free printable hedgehog coloring pages.

Amur Hedgehog Facts

What Did They Prey On?

Worms, beetles, ticks, beetles, snails, snakes

What Type of Animal were they?

Omnivore

Average Litter Size?

4

How Much Did They Weigh?

21-35 oz (600- 1000 g)

What habitat Do they Live In?

grassy savannas, deserts, forests

Where Do They Live?

russia, china, north korea, south korea

How Long Were They?

10 in (25 cm)

How Tall Were They?

N/A

Class

Mammalia

Genus

Erinaceus

Family

Erinaceidae

Scientific Name

Erinaceus amurensis

What Do They Look Like?

Light brown and white body and quills

Skin Type

Prickly quills, fur

What Are Their Main Threats?

hawks, eagles, foxes, ferrets

What is their Conservation Status?

Least Concern
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Written by Aabir Basu

Bachelor of Engineering specializing in Computer Engineering

Aabir Basu picture

Aabir BasuBachelor of Engineering specializing in Computer Engineering

During Aabir's higher education at Indian School Muscat, he received several academic awards before pursuing his Bachelor's degree in Computer Engineering at Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada. In addition to his academic achievements, Aabir participated in two Model United Nations conferences and volunteered as a librarian. With his diverse background and language skills, Aabir is a valuable member of the Kidadl team.

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