One the way back from the library this morning I came across a dead badger by the side of the main road, about half a mile west of my road. I went back this evening to check it out and note any details for the record.
When I got there the badger had gone. All I found, among the litter, fast food wrappers and wheel trims, was a decomposing deer (not pleasant!). As I was in the area, I walked down the verge for a hundred yards or so to see what I could find. The verge here is substantial, varying from 20-40 feet wide, with the road on one side and a boundary wall on the other. There are mature trees and varied undergrowth, from grass and bracken to big patches of nettles and brambles (not the place to be wearing shorts, as I found out).
It was a fascinating little area. I doubt if anyone has walked there or even seen it for years, even though thousands pass by on the main road right alongside. I doubt if there is enough space for full badger sett (they would need to cross the road to reach a decent foraging area, and if this was the case I’d have seen more casualties) but there was a network of paths. Following these, I came across a huge wasps’ nest that had been dug out, so there are obviously badgers in the area. There were wasps still present, so it had been dug out recently, possibly by the same badger that was killed on the road.
I don’t know if this means there is a sett nearby and the verge is part of their territory, or whether this was a lone badger, but it’s given me more clues about the badgers in the area. One thing still puzzles me though – the missing body of the badger. I mean, what sort of person goes round picking up dead badgers off the road? Apart from me, obviously…