Autumnal Badgers

For the last few weeks, I have had a couple of Bushnell NatureView trail cams up at a local sett. I had mounted it on a branch above the sett, but this one had not yielded many good clips as the branch had moved around too much, causing lots of false triggers. I had mounted the other one on a protruding root, very close to the ground and looking down a well-worn trail to the sett entrance.  This is one of the ‘black’ or ‘covert’ IR units. The infra-red  is at a frequency that is invisible so there is no glow at all. I will only use black IR when mounting the cams low in a site like this as I know they will not cause any disturbance to the badgers.

My gut instinct that this may be a good position was rewarded when I uploaded the footage!

The week had been very wet and very windy, hence many of the autumnal leaves had fallen and the whole site was covered in leaves. The badgers favourite tracks were clear, as the wet leaves had been compounded into the ground.

I had over 100 clips and many just showed the badger passing back and forth on their evening jaunts. They tend to appear around 7pm and return to the sett around 7am.

I have used my Bushnell a lot at this sett, so I am always looking for some captures that show something new or different…. and I was thrilled to have captured just that! One evening, in a half hour period, I captured several lovely clips of several badgers gathering leaves for their winter bedding. 

It is fascinating capturing moments like this… and this is the joy of trail cams!

Make sure you select to watch this in HD!

The badgers are preparing for the winter months and the females will be preparing to start their gestation periods.  Badgers mate  from the second half of July to about the end of August, but the litter of cubs will be born during the early spring. This is achieved by delayed implantation; the fertilised eggs do not implant in the uterine wall but remain in suspension, barely developing all through the spring, summer and autumn. By mid December the time for these clusters of cells (blastocysts) to implant in the uterine wall draws near; and by the end of the month gestation will have begun. The gestation period is about six or seven weeks. A litter can number as many as five cubs, but two or three is more usual. The cubs do not open their eyes until they are around five weeks old and will not emerge from the sett until April or May.

These badgers look in very good condition, so I hope they will all survive the winter and that I will see some new cubs appear in the Spring!