Cheshire Wildlife Group
"For those who enjoy the nature around us"
Meles Meles. The European or Eurasian Badger is a large nocturnal mammal found throughout most of Europe. It is related to otters, stoats, weasels and minks. They are around 70cm long, with a tail length of about 20cm with an average weight of 10kg. This can however vary enormously. They do not hibernate but are nocturnal, so they spend most of their day in a sett and are most commonly seen at night. A sett usually consists of many tunnels and it can have up to 40 openings! These setts are usually 0.5-2m underground, and have larger chambers which are usually lined with bedding such as grass, straw, dead leaves or bracken. Badgers prefer grazed pasture and woodland. They dislike clay soil, because it is hard for them to dig. Badgers can be found in urban areas, with some scavenging from bins and gardens. Unfortunately, many badgers are killed by road traffic in urban areas. Although classified as carnivorous, they are omnivorous and insectivorous. Most of their diet consists of earthworms, and they also eat insects, beetles, small mammals, reptiles, amphibians, eggs, young birds, berries, roots, bulbs, nuts and fruit. They also dig up wasp and bumblebee nests to eat the larvae. Badgers can occasionally be quite aggressive and have sharp teeth in defence. I personally love badgers!
Picture by Sam Goff. Badger coming out of it's sett, Utkinton, Cheshire.
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Established by Alex Staniforth February 2009