Thursday, February 14, 2008

Secret lives of badgers revealed

The subterranean secrets of badgers have been revealed by a BBC film crew.

Over two years, tiny cameras placed deep underground recorded the comings and goings of a wild badger family.

While the animals have been well studied outside of their setts, until now, little has been known about their behaviour while underground.

Never-before-seen behaviour was filmed, including the badgers diligently making their beds each evening before leaving the setts for a night of foraging.

The crew also captured newborn cubs on camera, as well as grooming and fighting between the older animals.

The footage was recorded for a BBC Natural World wildlife programme.

About 300,000 badgers live across Britain, their tracks and trails criss-cross the countryside, yet they are rarely seen.

Andrew Cooper, producer of Badgers - Secrets of the Sett, said: "Before we began filming, I knew that there was a gap in our knowledge about badgers.

"When I spoke to one badger expert, I said to him: 'How much do we know about their life underground?', and he simply held up a blank piece of paper.

"This is the first time we have had the opportunity to see real detail down there."


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