Meles meles

Badgers are large mammals, about 65-80 cm long. They have a white-striped face, grey body with paler fur underneath, black legs and a short tail. 

Badgers are mostly found in lowland Britain, with an obvious preference for deciduous woodland that runs along pasture land, where they can forage for their favourite food, earthworms. However, setts are also found in urban areas and Badgers may visit gardens to feed, gaining a reputation as nuisances when they dig up lawns and flower beds.

They are mostly nocturnal, spending the day in extensive setts underground that usually house about six adults, though there have been setts recorded with 23! Their territories can spread from anywhere between 30ha and 150ha.

The majority of the Badger’s diet is made up of earthworms, but they also eat berries and fruits. If their main food sources are particularly scarce, they have been known to eat other animals.

Badgers usually mate between February and May, but the implanting of the eggs doesn’t occur until late winter, ensuring that the cubs are born around February. This allows the cubs to be feeding independently by late summer, giving them a greater chance of surviving the winter.

Related content