Natural habitat

The African Pygmy Hedgehog resides in Central Africa from Senegal to Somalia and southwards towards North Zambia. They habitat in half desert areas (Sahel region) and live between the bushes, trunks and in small caves between stones. They are accustom to a softer surface and live in very dry areas with relatively few plants. In the half desert the temperature on average varies between 22 and 26 degrees Celsius in the summer nights. During the day the temperature can rise above 40 degrees Celsius. At those temperatures, the hedgehogs hide in cool caves and in the shadow. In an extreme hot summer they can go in to a summer sleep (aestivation). In the winter the nights are colder but never below 17 degrees Celsius. African Pygmy Hedgehogs have a short winter rest in these cold nights that lasts for a few days at most (hibernation). However, they are more resistant to heat than they are to the cold.

Steppe climate

Average temp. above 18 °C

Ten months of drought

2700 to 3500 hours of sun p/y

Rainy season

Two months p/y

100-600 mm p/y

25-75% humidity

Drying season

10-25% humidity

Ten months per year


25 – 42 °C, warm season

15 – 21 °C, cold season


Grassland & savanna

Forest areas

Bushy areas


During rainy season inhabitated by grazing animals.

Small animals are found year-round.

  • Vegetation and rainfall per year

Pictures by Wikipedia.

When trying to go into hibernation in captivity the temperature changes too quickly for them to appropriately respond to the situation. This causes them to go in shock. It looks similar to hibernation, with the only difference that the hedgehog could die within a few hours if not warmed up in time. With this in mind, it is advised to house African Pygmy Hedgehogs as stable as possible when it comes to the temperature. The minimum temperature is 22 degrees Celsius with a maximum of up to 35 degrees Celsius on warmer days.