Zoo celebrates birth of baby hedgehogs

The Cincinnati Zoo is celebrating the birth of four hedgehogs.

Two male and two female siblings were born Feb. 4 to their mother, Mali, and father, Kenya.

The hedgehogs are currently off exhibit and being cared for behind the scenes in the Zoo's Children's Zoo Nursery. They will be handraised by the nursery keepers until they are old enough to be included in the Zoo's Animal Outreach Program.

Nursery keepers are feeding the babies four times a day by grinding up dry hedgehog food and mixing it with esbilac. The gruel is easy for the young hedgehogs to digest.

The Cincinnati Zoo has been home to 13 hedgehogs.

Baby hedgehogs are born blind and hairless. They don't begin to sprout their sharp spines until 36 hours after birth.  The spines form a protective covering over their body.

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