Individually, sunflower seeds and peanuts have a poor calcium : phosphorus (Ca:P) ratio a contributing factor of Metabolic Bone Disease (MBD). This is a condition that affects all mammals, including hedgehogs and humans (commonly called rickets). However, when consumed as part of a balanced diet, they make an excellent contribution to health.
Ark Wildlife has always carefully balanced the ingredients of Ark Hedgehog Muesli to ensure that the combined ingredients make a positive contribution to hedgehog health and wellbeing. In fact, generations of rehabilitated hedgehogs who could not be returned to the wild, have lived long, healthy, and happy lives on a main diet of our Muesli.
Sunflower seeds and peanuts are packed with healthy proteins, oils and amino acids and are even considered super foods for humans. They form an integral part of many animal feeds, when balanced for the particular species dietary needs.
Ark Hedgehog Muesli was specifically blended for hedgehogs with a balanced calcium : phosphorus ratio but a number of groups have contacted us to say they have ‘concerns the public are confused by our ingredient list’ and ‘unbalanced bird food is also being sold with similar names’. Therefore, on balance we have withdrawn our Muesli to stop confusion and we will campaign for hedgehogs as we always have and continue with our research into hedgehog nutrition.
Note 1: It is sad that without retail sales to subsidise the cost of manufacture, it will be impossible to produce this food for wildlife hospitals and rescue centres and this announcement is the complete withdrawal of the product from our range.
Note 2: Please DO NOT be tempted to give hedgehogs milk to add calcium to their diet. Hedgehogs are lactose intolerant and this will negatively impact their health!