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Hedgehogs in Marrakech

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Newcastle upon...
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Hedgehogs in Marrakech

I've read about people who've seen hedgehogs sold in small cages as medicine, I've read about dried hedgehog skins.. and also about a man who wanders about with one in the market.

As a hedgehog carer (ie. someone who takes in sick and injured hedgehogs to rehabilitate), and also as someone who has 2 pygmy hedgehogs as pets, this would be really traumatic to see, and would really ruin my holiday.

Are dead/mistreated hedgehogs quite prevalent? Or a rare occurance? Has anyone who has been to Marrakech got any stories or experience??

Thank you

marrakech
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1. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

Hi,

They are not prevalent but you occasionally see one in a cage by a herborist shop. You can't change hundreds of years of traditional medecine I'm afraid so avoid those shops and you should be fine.

norfolk
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2. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

the traditional medicine shops on place d'epices do sometimes have them live in cages. we were enjoying our coffee one morning on this square, and watching a gentleman who had a pair of young kestrels. we saw him on the main square at night too. he seemed to treat the birds well, they were not afraid of him, and preened his beard for him. as we watched, an elderly lady approached with a sack. he peered inside and, after some negotiation, money changed hands. out of the sack rolled a fully grown hedgehog. the man and his friend played with it for a while, stroking its tummy and letting it walk from one to the other. he fed it with bits of flesh which he had for the birds. he then popped it in a box under his counter.

it is what it is. in, my opinion, there was no blatant cruelty involved. i have no doubt there are worse things going on in all parts of the world.

pam

Manchester, United...
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3. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

A completely different scenario has been described.

Kestrels are being used to impress tourists and to get them to part with their money simply to watch the birds. This also applies to monkeys and snakes in the square.

The hedgehogs are reported as being used for medicinal purposes, ie they are being killed and consumed in one form or another.

Two diiferent types of incident completely.

England, United...
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4. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

While walking through the medina in Fes last year we passed a man who was holding a hedgehog upside down. He had just cut it's throat and was draining the blood into a bucket. Needless to say I didn't linger. I was later told that some people eat them. Really? I have never seen nor heard this before in Morocco.

marrakech
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5. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

The blood is supposed to be good for arthritis. I think we may be putting Rachael off visiting.

England, United...
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6. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

You learn something new every day. Do they ingest it or spread it on the affected parts, since blood is haram in their religion?

Merzouga, Morocco
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7. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

Yes jacquiscotia, I don't know about all of Morocco but they are eaten over fire by nomads or people who were nomads previously and who live in the Merzouga area.

marrakech
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8. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

Hi,

I've heard they drink it. Remember the Berber people mixed Islam with their own beliefs. I don't think it is commonly done these days but as I said before you can't change a tradition going back hundreds of generations.

England, United...
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9. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

Exactly shimmin. Each to their own I say. I got funny looks years back when I used a bread poultice on my Moroccan sister-in-law's sore finger, they were amazed when it worked. Good old Scottish medicine!

Newcastle upon...
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10. Re: Hedgehogs in Marrakech

Thank you for your replies- I can't believe to have had so many posts in such a short time!

So I'll definitely avoid medicine shops.. I'm going in the next few days so trip is already booked! I'd just happened to google 'hedgehog marrakech' to see if there were any wildlife centers or hedgehog themed things to do.. and came across the photos of them in cages. I think I'd be very tempted to buy & release..