Somali Hedgehog (Atelerix sclateri)


Hedgehog pouting among autumn leaves

The Somali hedgehog, scientifically known as Atelerix sclateri, is a fascinating species of mammal belonging to the family Erinaceidae. This small, spiny creature is characterized by its nocturnal behavior and unique physical attributes, making it a captivating subject for wildlife enthusiasts and conservationists alike.


Charming hedgehog on rustic wooden surface with diverse camo-patterned fabrics background.

The Somali hedgehog is distinguished by its chocolate-brown and white spines, which provide essential protection from predators in its natural habitat. This species exhibits a compact body structure, with a pointed snout and small, dark eyes. The spines of the Somali hedgehog offer a striking visual contrast, contributing to its distinctive appearance compared to other hedgehog species.


Hedgehog on a brown dry leaves

Endemic to the regions of Somalia and Somaliland, the Somali hedgehog is intricately tied to these specific geographical areas. Its localized distribution underscores the importance of conservation efforts to safeguard its existence within these regions. The population density and distribution patterns of the Somali hedgehog warrant close monitoring to ensure the preservation of this unique species.

Habitat Preferences

The Somali hedgehog thrives in savanna ecosystems and other open habitats within its native range. These environments provide the ideal conditions for the species to forage for food and seek shelter during its nocturnal activities. The presence of grasslands and semi-arid woodlands contributes to the species’ survival and well-being, highlighting the interconnectedness between the Somali hedgehog and its natural habitat.

By shedding light on the distinctive characteristics, distribution, and habitat preferences of the Somali hedgehog, we gain valuable insights into the importance of protecting this species and its natural environment. Conservation efforts aimed at preserving the unique ecosystems that support the Somali hedgehog are essential for ensuring the continued existence of this remarkable mammal for future generations to appreciate and study.

Facts About Somali hedgehog

  1. The Somali hedgehog (Atelerix sclateri) is endemic to Somalia and Somaliland.
  2. Adult Somali hedgehogs weigh around 392 grams, with a birth weight of approximately 10 grams.
  3. Their diet consists of around 20% invertebrates and 10% endothermic organisms.
  4. The Somali hedgehog has five digits on its hind feet, and a small hallux.
  5. Their dorsal pelage is adorned with dark spines.
  6. Somali hedgehogs are savanna species, typically found in grasslands and open habitats.
  7. Some sources suggest that the Somali hedgehog is a subspecies of the African pygmy hedgehog, known as Ateleris albiventris sclateri.
  8. They belong to the family Erinaceidae and the genus Atelerix.
  9. Somali hedgehogs have a chocolate-brown and cream-colored coat.
  10. The Somali hedgehog is one of four species within the Atelerix genus, alongside Atelerix albiventris, Atelerix algirus, and Atelerix frontalis.

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