Hedgehogs are shy and peaceful animals that use their spines only to passively defend themselves from predators. The spines, which are actually modified hairs, are from 2 to 3 centimeters long and the adults have from 6, 000 to 8, 000.

The female has the vagina placed at the posterior end of the abdomen and this facilitates the task of the male. Furthermore, the female allows the male to mount it dorsally by arching the body downwards. In this position it further flattens the mantle of spines. The male is also helped by the size of the penis, which is a little less than his body.

Image Two hedgehogs engaged in mating. | Epa

Different positions. Different is the strategy of the porcupine, a rodent (the hedgehogs belong instead to the insectivores), which provides a complex pre-nuptial ritual. The female available for mating lowers the dorsal spines and raises the tail. The male stands up on its hind legs and leans only slightly on its back with its front legs.