By Stolz, Gary M. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
By Stolz, Gary M. (U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Taxidea taxus
Order: Carnivora

Husbandry Information

Housing Requirements

  • An enclosure with an impermeable floor, preferable with couple of feet of dirt on top, is important because badgers love to dig and burrow.

Diet Requirements

Veterinary Concerns

  • Badgers can be susceptible to H1N1 influenza.

Notes on Enrichment & Training

  • Badgers should be trained from a very early age.

Programmatic Information

Tips on Presentation

  • Harness training works well. Badgers are low to the ground, so having them on a dias, stage, or at least a stump will help the audience see them.

Tips on Handling

  • Badgers are a challenging animal to work with, given their bold, quick, and potentially agressive nature. The trainer must have a good relationship with the animal and be very sensitive to precursors to aggression. Badgers are very decisive about what they do and do not like, so knowing this beforehand and setting them up for success is important.

Potential Messaging

  • They are a very important part of the ecosystem, helping keep prairie dogs under control, and aerating the soil.
  • Climate change: Desert and Dryland species have specific adaptations for the temperature and water availability in their natural habitat and may not be able to adjust to the drying effects of climate change. Hotter conditions promote wildfires. More extreme drought conditions kill plants that hold the soil in place and occasional extreme rain events wash that soil away preventing them from growing back in a process called desertification. Greenhouse gas emissions from burning fossil fuels contributes to climate change by trapping heat in the atmosphere. Please ask guests to walk, bike, or take public transportation when possible and to reduce their use of fossil fuels when they do drive by buying a fuel economic car, carpooling, combining errands, and keeping vehicles properly tuned up and their tires properly inflated. At home and work, purchase Energy Star appliances, turn off lights when they are not in use, and use heaters and air conditioners sparingly. The principles of reduce, reuse, and recycle will also help by decreasing greenhouse gas emissions involved with the manufacture and disposal of unnecessary goods.

Acquisition Information

Orphaned badgers can occasionally be found at rescue and rehab facilities.

Comments from the Rating System

  • Natural Science Center of Greensboro: Easy to care for, and they have cool behaviors to showcase (i.e., digging). If working with a young animal, they are also great with training.

Natural History Information

Range and Habitat

Physical Description

Life Cycle


Threats and Conservation Status

Did you know…


Contributors and Citations

  • San Diego Zoo
  • Houston Zoo, Natural Encounters