Badgers have seen a resurgence in Texas over the past decade, due to the introduction of several new conservation measures. This has led to an increase in the population of these omnivorous mammals throughout most regions in the state. While these animals were once limited to areas around Nolan and Fisher counties, they can now be found almost everywhere, from coastal prairies to the Panhandle plains.
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They are most commonly found in the prairie and desert sections of the state’s western region. Surprisingly, badgers appear to prefer large, open areas that remain uncultivated by humans. This creates quite an interesting site as one travels through these parts of Texas–there among the cactus, sunflowers and prickly pear you may spot a badger going about its day!
Badgers in Texas are omnivores, meaning that they eat both plants and animals to get their nutrients. Their diet consists of insects, small animals like rodents, birds, eggs and reptiles, as well as a variety of plant matter such as fruits, roots, tubers and grasses. Badgers also enjoy a range of other food items like earthworms and even deer carcasses they come across in the wild. To hunt effectively in their nocturnal lifestyle, badgers have strong front claws and sharp teeth which they use to take down their prey. All these sources of food allow badgers to stay healthy in their diverse habitats throughout the world.
Badgers in Texas have a unique pattern of fur colouration in Texas. Its long, thick fur is mostly a shade of brown-grey, with its legs and large eye circles being a darker black than the rest of its body. The badger’s underbelly has a light cream or white colour that helps it blend into fields commonly found around Texas.
Size, Lifespan and Weight
Badgers are usually between 24-30 inches in length, have an average weight of roughly 15-25 pounds, and can live for up to 9 years in the wild. However, some badger species can live up to 16 years in captivity.
Badgers in Texas face numerous predators in the wild, but their main enemy is the fox. Studies have shown that foxes are responsible for up to 90% of badger cub mortality and can be particularly aggressive during the spring cubbing season. Other wild predators include coyotes, wolves, raptors such as golden eagles and red-tailed hawks, dogs, weasels and various snakes.
Badgers in Texas reproduce by mating with the opposite sex, typically after a courtship period.
When successful mating has occurred, the female badger will produce a litter of three or four cubs approximately seven weeks later. The cubs are born blind and helpless, relying entirely on the care and protection of their parents.
They are weaned between 6-8 weeks after birth and will live in the same den until they are independent enough to move out and find their own territory at around eight months of age. Although badgers can mate year-round, most litters are born during spring or early summer so that the cubs can take advantage of warmer weather and an abundance of food resources before winter arrives.
Are there badgers in Texas?
Yes, they are found in Texas. They are present in every part of Texas except the east side. This small mammal is adaptable and can live in different types of terrain, but they most commonly inhabit the spacious, untouched plains of the western regions.
Where do badgers live in Texas?
Badgers live throughout Texas apart from the east side.
Facts on The Badgers in The West Side of Texas
The badgers of the west side of Texas are incredibly resilient creatures, surviving in harsh conditions that would challenge many other species. Despite their vulnerability to coyotes and increasing temperatures due to climate change, the badger population has been steadily increasing since 2013! These medium-sized mammals are surprisingly sociable and can often be found living in a complex network of burrows and tunnels, usually with two or more individuals occupying them.
Growing up enjoying the beauty of my village, a good passion for nature developed in me from childhood. Following my passion for the natural world, I have chosen zoology for my graduation, during my undergraduate degree, I participated in many nature trails, bird watching, rescues, training for wildlife conservation, workshop, and seminars on biodiversity. I have a keen interest in invertebrate biology, herpetology, and ornithology. Primary interests include studies on taxonomy, ecology, habitat and behavior.