Badger Rescue News 2018-2019

In November 2018, a friend, Maggie was awoken at 2 am by the sound of heavy footprints coming up her stairs and into her bedroom. She shouted at the animal, that she thought was her cat, to leave. It was in fact a badger and it ran into her bathroom. She rang the RSPCA who told her to shut all her doors apart from the bathroom and kitchen doors. The badger was still there in the morning and had tried to dig its way through the floor, so she rang the Badger Group for help. My husband and I went to the house, equipped with a cage, a dark cloth and a grasper.

We tiptoed into the bathroom and my husband tried to persuade the badger to enter the covered cage, but it climbed into the bath. Luckily the badger turned to look at him and he slipped the ring of the grasper round its neck. Then the badger was lifted into the cage and carried downstairs. We put it food and water inside the cage and left in a shady spot. Our next task was to look round the garden to find out where the animal had entered. Luckily we were able to find a gap in the garden fence just big enough for the badger to squeeze through.
In the evening we moved the cage to this gap and put peanuts on the far side of it to tempt the badger out. We opened the cage door. but the badger was too frightened to come out. It was a very noisy evening and we hoped it would leave when it was darker and quieter. In the morning Maggie rang us to say the badger had gone and so had the food, water and peanuts! We were very relieved and hoped that it had returned to its sett safely. Finally Maggie closed the gap in the fence as she did not want another night disturbed by a badger! We were sure that this was the strangest badger rescue we would ever deal with but we were wrong!

Rescuing a Badger from a Basement!

In May 2019 a lady contacted the Badger Group to say that she and her father had been woken in the middle of the night by a series of bumps. Fearing that these noises were due to burglars they searched the ground and upper floor of the house, but found nothing amiss. The house was over two hundred years old and had a large basement reached by steep brick stairs. They decided go down to look in there the next morning and to their surprise they found a badger asleep in an Ikea bag!

When we arrived with our usual rescue kit we found the badger hiding in a very narrow gap under the pallet. My husband carefully manoevred the pallet and our cage, until the only way out for the badger was into the covered cage. He then inserted a board into a gap in the pallet to gradually shunt the animal into our cage. To our great relief this worked! Our next task was to find out where the badger had entered the garden, but we couldn't find this. However, the badger became very excited when taken outside. The cage door was opened and it ran quickly across the garden and into a wood-shed. There was no sign of it the next day!

We went back into the basement to try to find out how the badger had got into it. There was a small window touching the brick roof at either end of the cellar. Both windows were inset into a rectangular pit on the outside, so the top of the window was about at ground level. One of these windows had a very small gap between the top of the window frame and the brick roof. It was possibly just about big enough for a badger to squeeze through it. but it must have been extremely difficult to do this.

I had noticed earler that the badger had a small wound on its rump that would have caused by a fight with another badger. It may have fallen into the pit to escape its assailant or gone into it to hide.I was also able to find a badger paw print on the window glass, so it must have managed somehow to climb up to the top of the glass window before pushing itself through the tiny space. It then probably fell or jumped onto the basement floor without any visible injury! Badgers are indeed tough and resoucefull!

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