It’s way past your bedtime
HEDGEHOGS were seen shuffling around gardens well into December, far beyond their usual November to March hibernation curfew, reports the BTO. Volunteers reported more hedgehogs in gardens in November and December, foraging for earthworms and insects to add to their winter stores, than in any previous year, probably as a result of the mild weather—the mean temperature for December last year was 2.1˚ above average. This was especially the case in the southern and eastern parts of the UK. Now that it’s suitably cold, hedgehogs should be fast asleep. If you see one, it could be sick or injured and you’re advised to contact your local vet, the British Hedgehog Preservation Society (www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk) or a local wildlife centre.
Perhaps better known for poetic nonsense, Edward Lear—who painted The Forest of Valdoniello, Corsica (above)—is among the many 18th- and 19th-century British watercolourists whose work, some of which has never before been exhibited, is part of the Eton College Collections and will be shown at the upcoming Works on Paper Fair in at the Royal Geographical Society, London SW7 (February 9–12, www.worksonpaperfair.com)