Ecology and Behaviour
Badgers are shy, nocturnal animals that live in underground chambers connected by a network of tunnels known as a sett.
They live in close social groups or clans, each of which has its own clearly defined territory.
Their diet consists largely of earthworms and insects, cereals and fruit with a few birds and small mammals although this varies slightly throughout the year.
Their hearing and sense of smell are well developed but their eyesight is poor.
Within their territory they live fairly peaceably, but they will squabble amongst themselves to establish a hierarchy.
Around the sett badgers will groom each other and individuals will frequently musk or scent mark other members of the group.
It is in this way that group members develop a “collective” scent, which is different from other groups.
During the winter months, food is less abundant so badgers tend to live off their reserves of fat.
Although less active in the winter, badgers do not hibernate.
Vocalisation is not one of the badger’s strong points, but they can be heard to make barks, growls and chattering noises.
Badgers are clean animals, regularly changing their bedding and cleaning out the sett, especially in the spring!
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