In this section an attempt is made to answer the most commonly asked questions about badgers.

Where do badgers live?

Underground in a series of tunnels and chambers called a sett. These are usually out in the countryside in areas of woodland and grassland. Occasionally they are found in more unusual places such as hedges, under sheds and buildings and more recently living within town boundaries.

What do they eat?

Their favourite food is earthworms but depending on the availability of worms they will eat more or less anything. They are omnivores so their diet includes berries, nuts, small mammals such as rabbits as well as taking any opportunity to scavenge for larger dead animals.

Why do badgers need protection under the law?

Badgers are not an endangered species in terms of the their population but the do suffer large losses from road accidents and to a lesser degree from loss of habitat. Badgers have no predators in the wild and so their main threat is from humans. Badger digging and baiting is still common in certain areas of the country. This mistreatment of wildlife brought about the first Badger Protection Act of 1973.

Will they attack people?

Badgers are very shy animals and are generally afraid of people so they will take every effort to avoid contact with humans. If a badger, especially an injured one, is cornered, fear will make it want to defend itself. Care must be taken as it can deliver a nasty bite. Since they are nocturnal, your chances of coming across one in such a way is minimal.

Why do we rarely see badgers?

Badgers only come out at night and so only if you make a special effort to go badger watching are you likely to see one. You may see many dead badgers in the road and roadside mainly due to motorists driving too quickly to avoid wildlife.

Do badgers make good pets?

Definitely not, as badgers are wild animals. They are social animals and need a wide range of territory and also need be with other badgers. They are not cuddly animals as they are very strong and have a nasty bite. They are better left in the wild only to be enjoyed in their natural habitat.