Wednesday 1 April 2015

April 2015 Mammal of the Month - The Badger

Photo credit: Matt Collis
Our April mammal of the month is the badger. The species we have in the UK is the European badger (scientific name Meles meles). It will be familiar to many of us from children's stories and lots of other sources but how many of you have seen one live in the wild? If you do spot one, please record it for us here. Any road-kill victims can also be entered as a record although of course we hope not to have many of those. Any other mammal records can be entered via the same page too.

Our top five badger facts are:
  • They weigh around 8-9 kg in the spring but go up to about 11 to 12 kg in the autumn
  • Social groups usually contain about 6 adults but groups of over 20 have been recorded
  • Cubs are born bald and blind within the sett, usually in February, and do not emerge above ground for around 2 months (so look out soon!).
  • They mark the edge of their territories with latrines - shallow pits in which they defecate
  • The territory around a set is usually around 30 ha but can be up to 150 ha.

For more details, check out the very informative Mammal Society fact sheet on the species, including pictures of their tracks and signs.

If you are lucky enough to take a photo of a badger or have any that you've already taken, we'd love to see them - please share!