Top Ten Hedgehog facts

Top ten lists clearly seem a fruitful topic, so I decided to try various subjects. First, hedgehogs:

First attempt. Fact no. 9 sounds almost believable, but all in all you probably still shouldn’t trust GPT-J’s claims. Rather fascinatingly, after reaching the end of this ‘facts’ list, it generated not just a finishing paragraph for the purported article (or rather ‘listicle’), but also a complete comment section, which even references some of the strange facts mentioned in the preceding article (e.g. that hedgehogs can apparently ‘be taunted’). Unfortunately I ran into the character count limit of GPT-J, so the comment section breaks off in the middle of the tenth comment – trying to generate more text would require selectively deleting bits of the preceding text, which of course means that GPT-J can no longer take those deleted bits into account when generating the continuation.

The Top Ten facts about hedgehogs you'd never have guessed: 10. You can't take One Happy A hedgehog with its spines erect can look like a kind of hedgehog. It is a defensive movement when a predator is close, but it has no teeth so it won't be able to inflict injury. A hedgehog that is unable to protect itself from danger is said to have the "hedgehogs at 'em." 9. In Japan, Hedgehog Day is celebrated on May 1st In Japan, May 1st is the official day dedicated to the celebration of the cuteness of hedgehogs. In memory of the hedgehogs that died during a big storm, people share their sorrow and appreciation for the cute animals by eating sweets. On May 1st, people celebrate this day by sharing a chatty meal and playing with hedgehogs. There is a big area in Sapporo, Hokkaido, where people can view the cuteness of hedgehogs in one place. 8. They can be taunted You know when you see a little cute cat or a little cute dog in a cartoon or a movie? Chances are that they are taunting people. That is what hedgehogs are doing to people. People poke their heads out from behind hedges, then ham it up in a kind of desperate attempt to elicit a reaction. They look sad or make sad noises. Perhaps the most famous taunting hedgehog is the one in the classic cartoon, Scooby Doo. He is always hiding behind a shrub. His appearance is so sad, though, that you don't really get angry at him, but kind of pity him. 7. There is an industry which harvests hedgehogs for their skin In the UK, hedgehogs are found in fields and gardens where they are unfortunately routinely killed by motorists and gardeners. There is now an industry to harvest hedgehogs for the skin. 6. Hedgehogs can turn up on menus Hedgehogs are a popular pet in the UK because they taste great and are low maintenance. When they are viewed as a delicacy, not a nuisance, we are able to keep them as pets. 5. They're good at hiding In the wild, hedgehogs can live out their entire lives without being seen. Hedgehogs have a lot of natural camouflage. Their last set of spines are called the dermis which serve as a shield. When they are young, this dermis is turned inside out, so that it is on the outside. If a predator comes close, it will first peep around the hedge and see what it is about. If it doesn't see any animal trying to get at it, it will then move to the next hedge and proceed in that way until it finds a hedgehog. 4. They're smart Hedgehogs are smart in the way that they can form relationships. They don't behave like hyenas or elephants or dogs. Because they are so small, they can get into places where larger animals cannot. Because they hunt only at night, they can hide and not be seen by predators. They can also form groups known as "clans". 3. Hedgehog care is important Good hygiene is very important for hedgehogs. They can't do a lot about their skin condition, but they can do things to make themselves smell nice. It is easy to clean their ears, though. If you wipe them with a damp cloth, they will come out unscathed and will require little or no maintenance. 2. They're pretty tough. Hedgehogs are very robust. They can survive in a wide range of temperatures, so long as they have access to a source of water. Of course they like to hunker down under a log or rocks in cold weather. If you scratch them, they will defend themselves with their spines, so you will need to be careful. And they can have a good sense of humour. They can be teased. They can play dumb. They're able to carry on being adorable even if they get hurt. 1. They can't hibernate Hedgehogs cannot hibernate. Because they have no fur, they do not have enough fat to survive. They have a "shelter" they can retreat into, though. They bury themselves in the ground so that they are off the ground and out of sight. They will then huddle up and wait for the weather to get warmer. When it does, hedgehogs "wake up" and come out to graze on insects and grubs. If they are hungry, they can eat their way out of the ground and look for more food. -- If you have just spent five minutes reading this article, you have probably already enjoyed watching a few hedgehogs in your garden. If not, we can't help you. You need to go out and search. But you are not the only one. There are all kinds of hedgehogs in the world. Have you seen a hedgehog? Send us your pictures or videos of hedgehogs and tell us why you love them. It is very easy to share pictures on our FB page. 11 Comments Mel Glad to learn that hedgehogs are pretty smart! Also, glad to learn that they can be “taunted”. I think I am going to start taunting them at night to see what happens. I am an entomologist, so I love to hear what they say to me when I do. I’ve always been fascinated by hedgehogs, especially the way they can camouflage themselves. I’ve had them in the past, but the one I had died, so I’m glad I didn’t get a second one. Hi there, this is my first comment here so im just going to jump in and say that I love hedgehogs and Hamsters to! I know they are alittle to small for us but we weigh about 2 lbs and we are just like them, we have a little crawl space under the house that we can hide in, we are even able to have a little den if we want to. I hope you have a good week, eHAPPY NZ!!!!!!!!!!! Hedgehogs are a really interesting animal. They make the perfect pets and I spend some time with my Hedgehog Darley who looks very similar to the hedgehogs in this article. They are absolutely no fuss and although they can look horrible, once you get to know them and their personalities they are utterly adorable. I go to the Yorkshire Wildlife Park twice a week and sit on my car bonnet and watch the hedgehogs as they come out of their burrows to look for food. I’ve never seen any others like them and I love watching them. I’m not sure what the calling him “One happy” means as I’ve never heard that before but I’ll just have to hope that his smile is infectious. Hi there this is my first comment so i just want to say that i love hedgehogs there are just so little of them in the world as an entomologist I really want to help them. I hope you have a good week. I’m still learning about hedgehogs. I haven’t actually adopted one yet. I know they can be taunted, but I don’t really know how they would react. I guess I’ll have to be very careful while taunting them. As for One Happy, I don’t know. I think he would have to be in a bettle. They aren’t in the same situation as hedgehogs, but they are still cute and I think they would like being called one happy. They can be taunted with any name. We try to teach them names like “pussy”, “cat”, “dog”, “pony”, “doll”, “bunny”, “kitty”, “mouse”, “chicken”, “squirrel”, “rabbit”, “fish”, “snake”, “frog”, “bird”, “fish”, “lion”, “pig”, “lion”, “crocodile”, ”tiger”, “bear”, “wolf”, “elephant”, “camel”, “tiger”, “bear”. They react to them all. They play around with us, sometimes they jump up on us, doing a sharp contortions, sometimes they play with us, mimicking the sounds we make. Sometimes they jump on us, climbing on our, then jump off of us to the ground. They play around and they enjoy playing because they are playful. They love to chase the balls and

Second attempt. This time it generated a more succint – though nonetheless weird and not-to-be-trusted – list of one-sentence facts. Also no more invented comments section, but as a replacement we have a made-up copyright section instead.

Consistency still doesn't seem to be GPT-J’s forte, though, as e.g. facts 2.) (theyʼre frail and don't live that long) and 1.) (theyʼre resistant to diseases and long-lived) rather directly contradict each other. (Of course to be fair, for these kind of creative writing exercises I am running the model at a rather high temperature[1], both by necessity – at lower temperatures it often only gives short answers and then starts repeating the original input and getting into a loop – and choice – I am looking for wonderfully weird responses after all, ainʼt I?)

The Top Ten facts about hedgehogs you'd never have guessed: 10. The World’s Smallest Hedgehog was born in Japan and weighs just 27 grams. 9. Hedgehog mothers eat their own weight in food for a day after giving birth. 8. A hedgehog mother only leaves the den to “scratch her beautiful belly” in complete darkness. 7. Hedgehogs are the only wild land-dwelling mammal that bury their food when they eat because they are night active. 6. Hedgehogs can’t reach the top half of their head against a wall due to their disproportionately long legs. 5. Hedgehogs are the only mammals who get their own dedicated organ in their neck for breathing. 4. Hedgehogs are the only toilet-bound mammal that has a specialised organ in their neck for breathing. 3. This is the only mammal that has a second stomach to help break down indigestible material. 2. Hedgehogs have the life expectancy of the most frail among land-dwelling mammals, 3 years and 4 months. 1. Hedgehogs are thought to be among the oldest living mammals, due to their longevity and strong resistance to disease. I hope these facts have made you start looking after your hedgehogs better (Also note: you can’t lead a dog down the stairs) Source & Image: Original Source: This article is Copyright © Jonathan Riddell, 2016. All rights reserved.


  1. A wholly unscientific metaphor would be to say that I am getting GPT-J somewhat drunk.