Badger Badger

This is one of Wyoming's important furbearers. Just keep your distance!

Fun Critter Facts

- A semi-fossorial carnivore, meaning it spends a significant amount of time below the surface of the ground, the American badger, is a pugnacious and effective predator, and one of the chief sources of rodent control in Wyoming.  

- Badgers feed on a wide array of vertebrates, ranging from prairie dogs and ground squirrels, to ground nesting birds and their young and eggs, skunks, young wild canids (foxes and coyotes), and even rattlesnakes.  Badgers are a chief source of rattlesnake mortality in many plains states.

- Badgers prefer open desert or plains habitats, but can be found in timber stands and have been documented many times above timberline.  Here, their choice prey may include a large number of pikas. 

- The peak of mating for badgers occurs Mid July to Mid September in Wyoming; the reason the species is more often encountered during this time period since they are on the move in search of the opposite sex.  Since badgers are mustelids (a member of the weasel family), they practice delayed implantation and pregnancy does not begin until about February, even though breeding may have occurred months earlier.  Young are born totally dependent on the female in April and are typically weaned and off on their own by late June.  Litters range from one to five young, typically two to three.

- Badgers are a furbearer in many states, including Wyoming.  To take one in Wyoming, sportsmen must possess a valid furbearer hunting or trapping license.  Badgers, despite their willingness to do battle and scent glands (they are weasels after all), occasionally become prey to golden eagles, adult coyotes, wolves, bobcats, domestic dogs, humans, and mountain lions.  During the breeding season, they are frequently observed crossing highways, and roadkill is a major source of mortality, especially in highly fragmented habitats.

- Badgers are active both night and day and may be encountered at any time.   

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