We're over a week into March already and I've been hoping that we'll see the hedgehogs coming out of hibernation in the next few weeks. However, it seems that the winter just does not want to go away this year and recently the nights have been bitterly cold with the water freezing in the water bowl I leave outside for our various visitors.
Last night did seem a little warmer though; the water didn't freeze this time. Furthermore, look at this evidence in the hedgehog feeding station (see photo above). I've left food out in the feeding station all winter - just in case our spiky friends awake from hibernation - but this is the first time that it's been touched since mid-November (other than me refreshing it a couple of times and throwing the older food out for the birds). Yesterday, that bowl was full of mealworms, but I think you can safely say it's half empty now.
It could be a hedgehog, or it might just be a particularly clever starling who has discovered this secret supply of food.
I think tonight a camera trap is called for! Stay tuned.
ADDITIONAL: Just after writing the above it occured to me that if it was a hedgehog, there might be droppings nearby, so I've just checked outside again and near to the feeding station on the patio there are indeed some fresh droppings! It seems as if the first of the hedgehogs is back.