Do Skrewts hibernate?

Hagrid attempts to get his students to put the Skrewts into hibernation boxes

Extract from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

by J.K. Rowling

'I’m not sure whether they hibernate or not,’ Hagrid told the shivering class in the windy pumpkin patch next lesson. ‘Thought we’d jus’ try an’ see if they fancied a kip … We’ll jus’ settle ’em down in these boxes …’

There were now only ten Skrewts left; apparently their desire to kill each other had not been exercised out of them. Each of them was now approaching six feet in length. Their thick grey armour, their powerful, scuttling legs, their fire-blasting ends, their stings and their suckers, combined to make the Skrewts the most repulsive things Harry had ever seen. The class looked dispiritedly at the enormous boxes Hagrid had brought out, all lined with pillows and fluffy blankets.

‘We’ll jus’ lead ’em in here,’ Hagrid said, ‘an’ put the lids on, and we’ll see what happens.’

But the Skrewts, it transpired, did not hibernate, and did not appreciate being forced into pillow-lined boxes and nailed in. Hagrid was soon yelling ‘Don’ panic, now, don’ panic!’ while the Skrewts rampaged around the pumpkin patch, now strewn with the smouldering wreckage of the boxes. Most of the class – Malfoy, Crabbe and Goyle in the lead – had fled into Hagrid’s cabin through the back door and barricaded themselves in; Harry, Ron and Hermione, however, were among those who remained outside trying to help Hagrid. Together they managed to restrain and tie up nine of the Skrewts, though at the cost of numerous burns and cuts; finally, only one Skrewt was left.

‘Don’ frighten him, now!’ Hagrid shouted, as Ron and Harry used their wands to shoot jets of fiery sparks at the Skrewt, which was advancing menacingly on them, its sting arched, quivering, over its back. ‘Jus’ try an’ slip the rope round his sting, so he won’ hurt any o’ the others!’

‘Yeah, we wouldn’t want that!’ Ron shouted angrily, as he and Harry backed into the wall of Hagrid’s cabin, still holding the Skrewt off with their sparks.

‘Well, well, well … this does look like fun.’

Rita Skeeter was leaning on Hagrid’s garden fence, looking in at the mayhem. She was wearing a thick magenta cloak with a furry purple collar today, and her crocodile-skin handbag was over her arm.

Hagrid launched himself forward on top of the Skrewt that was cornering Harry and Ron and flattened it; a blast of fire shot out of its end, withering the pumpkin plants nearby.

‘Who’re you?’ Hagrid asked Rita Skeeter, as he slipped a loop of rope around the Skrewt’s sting and tightened it.

‘Rita Skeeter, Daily Prophet reporter,’ Rita replied, beaming at him. Her gold teeth glinted.

‘Thought Dumbledore said you weren’ allowed inside the school any more?’ said Hagrid, frowning slightly as he got off the slightly squashed Skrewt and started tugging it over to its fellows.

Rita acted as though she hadn’t heard what Hagrid had said.

‘What are these fascinating creatures called?’ she asked, beaming still more widely.

‘Blast-Ended Skrewts,’ grunted Hagrid.

‘Really?’ said Rita, apparently full of lively interest. ‘I’ve never heard of them before … where do they come from?'

Harry noticed a dull red flush rising up out of Hagrid’s wild black beard, and his heart sank. Where had Hagrid got the Skrewts from?


Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

By J.K. Rowling