Badger welfare

Badgers are great at digging, with muscular limbs and strong non-retractable claws. They're mostly nocturnal, but cubs can sometimes be seen foraging during daylight during summer if food is scarce.

Badgers mainly eat earthworms, but they'll also take other invertebrates, rodents, rabbits, cereals, fruit and bulbs. They're highly territorial - fights between badgers for territory are fierce and can result in serious injury.

Badgers and their setts are protected by law. If you think that someone has committed an offence under the Protection of Badgers Act 1992, please call our cruelty line on 0300 1234 999 - or contact the police. 

Find out what to do with an injured or sick badger or an orphaned badger cub.

Helping badgers

You can help wild badgers by giving them small amounts of food during dry summers or long periods of cold weather, when natural food is in short supply.

Suitable foods include:

  • Tinned cereal-based dog food
  • Lightly cooked meat
  • Cheese
  • Unsalted peanuts
  • Seasonal fruits

Be careful when feeding wildlife. Only feed them small amounts so that they don't become dependent on non-natural food supplies. This also stops problems arising if your neighbours don't welcome badgers, as this may lead to them taking action against them.

Don't provide food if it encourages badgers to cross a busy road.

Badgers on the road

Sadly, we see many badgers admitted to our wildlife centres with injuries due to traffic collisions, especially in early spring.

Make sure you take extra care of badgers on the road, particularly at night. Keep your high beams on, your speed low and be aware that another badger may be following one that has already crossed.

If you see an injured badger, please contact your local wildlife rehabilitator or call us on 0300 1234 999.

To report a dead animal, please contact your local council.

Deterring badgers from your garden

Expanding urban areas are often built on existing badger territories, which may mean that badgers come into gardens as they look for food, or find their home is now in secluded areas of gardens or recreational land.

The most humane and long-term solution to discourage badgers is to remove or stop access to whatever it is that's attracting them, whether this is food or shelter. However, do bear in mind that badgers and their setts are protected by law.

Want to help badgers? Find your local Badger Group or download our living with badgers factsheet to learn more.

For more information about badgers, visit The Badger Trust.

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