Our group undertakes a varity of tasks to protect our local badgers.
TASKS AND PROJECTS.
In order for our group to be effective and run smoothly there are a number of vital tasks and projects that we have to run and complete.
If you are interesting in any of the roles please get in touch.
This involves walking every area of our zone to find any badger activity, setts (where they live) or signs badgers may near be nearby, This is then all documented for when the cull comes around. See more below.
Badger patrols are family friendly walks along legal footpaths. They are often in the evening with a group of people with torches and hi-vis vests. They run throughout the badger cull period. See more below.
Close surveillance of large setts to ensure the badgers are safe, protected and no illegal persecution is occurring.
Stop Wildlife Crime
Documenting and reporting illegal wildlife crimes to the police, such as tampering or destruction of a sett.
Exposure of the cull
Sharing badger cull activities and anything relevant such as the horrors of intensive farming to a large audience.
Showing landowners, farmers and anyone who may sign up to the badger cull that there is a large amount of opposition to culling wildlife and there are better alternatives.
FOR THE BADGERS.
What is Sett surveying and why do we do it?
Sett surveying is a high priority for us all year round.
Looking for setts is really important with regards to protecting the sett and the badgers within.Unfortunately, badgers are persecuted throughout the year in different areas.
Both legal and illegal interference happens with setts – sometimes they are legally ‘evicted’ so that development can happen. Other times they are
“dug-out” (dug out of their setts to be baited), other examples include illegal snaring, sett blocking (often done by a hunt to stop a fox going underground to escape the hunt hounds) interference, lamping and of course the badger culls.
We sett survey in order to monitor badger activity and report any illegal interference to the police throughout the year, this information is essential for us during the cull as it helps us decide where best to deploy our teams of badger protectors.
We hold regular sett surveying training days, and anyone can come along, (please see our events page). We have a wide range of people getting involved, most of them share an interest in wildlife and enjoy country walks. Here are some helpful tips we have picked up over the years:
It’s always best to keep a buddy with you as some of the trails can take you off to some
Wear old clothes that you don’t mind getting caught on brambles and that cover your legs to protect from stinging nettles.
Stick to a simple meet up plan and keep in phone contact with the group.
Bring a packed lunch and something to drink.
What to record
Badger holes (Setts) – Look for fresh digging, but sometimes old spoil heaps grown over may still be active when you take a closer look. Check entrance holes, are they clear and big enough for a badger to get through? Record how many active and inactive holes with a grid reference, this means it will be easy to find again. And we can monitor any reduction in activity.
Latrines – Shallow holes with Badger poo piled in. Look for latrines at boundaries and corners of field, on runs and sometimes near a sett. Record these with a grid ref.
Runs – They tend to be clear and smooth from a badger’s belly wearing down the foliage. Often, they will cross a field or footpath and the run will go through the hedge. They will lead to a food or water source for the Badgers. Record these with a grid ref.
Road traffic accident – Dead badgers on roads record with grid ref, we record these as a way to tell us there is a badger population nearby.
If you are unable to come to one of our days but would like to start doing some surveying in order to help protect our badgers, a good app to download is the ordnance survey map and a grid ref app.
You can download these in the apple app store or the google play store on your smart phone.
This will enable you to record grid refences, you can then email us your sett surveying info and we will be in touch.
We also offer free map reading training, remember to have fun!
Do you like country walks? Do you care about wildlife?
We are always looking for volunteers to join our Badger Patrols in your area.
Badger patrols are family friendly walks along footpaths. They are often in the evening with a group of people with torches and hi vis vests. They run throughout the badger cull period. Normally from September through to mid-October.
They are 100% legal and are coordinated night walks within the badger cull zones.
If you are interested in joining one of our organised patrols, or are interested in setting up a pop-up patrol of your own, please get in touch.
Patrols go out at night, always in a group so no one is ever alone. We are as visible as possible on rights of way, deterring any shooters that might be nearby.
Being on the ground puts the badger patrol in a very good position to gather evidence of breaches of licence conditions. Inhumane shooting, snaring, or any other information that may help to show the public and government how unjust the badger culls are.
If you decide to take part, remember this: Badger patrols are 100% legal, we do not conduct ourselves outside the law ever. Patrollers have a legal right to go where they go and do what they do.
Some equipment is essential. Apart from the obvious, warm clothing, waterproofs, boots, high-visibility jackets, (we generally provide hi-vis jackets on our organised walks) torches with spare batteries, cameras and mobile phones with a GPS facility.
If possible, a dashboard and body cameras to record any incidents.
Come and get involved in saving wildlife in your local area and meet new people with similar interests, you’ll never walk alone.