Retrospectacle: A Neuroscience Blog

The Neuroscience of Badgers

Ok, I lied. There is no neuroscience of badgers. I just wanted to post this awesome video from an animal rescue facility in England, who reared an abandoned otter cub with a group of motherless baby badgers for companionship. Once the otter and badgers were grown, they were seperated so they could learn species-specific behaviors and be released back into the wild.


  1. #1 Karen
    January 16, 2008

    o_O Crazy that a badger is so playful. I thought they were mean!

  2. #2 Alexandra
    January 16, 2008

    that a badger is so playful. I thought they were mean!

    You’re thinking American badgers (taxidea taxus) that li’l fellow was European (meles meles).

  3. #3 Doug
    January 16, 2008

    Hi Shelly,

    I thought that you might be interested in the close relationship of a Badger to a Wolverine [in addition to being members or the Big 10 base 11 Conference].

    From the Minnesota DNR:
    Kingdom Animalia
    Phylum Chordata
    Class Mammals
    Order Carnivora
    Family Mustelids or Weasel
    [65 species, mustelids are the largest family of carnivores in the world]

  4. #4 Shelley Batts
    January 16, 2008

    Thanks Doug, great article. I learned something new and really interesting:

    “Most female mustelids [badgers/weasels/otters/etc] have a special way to ensure their young are born when food is available. Called “delayed implantation,” this adaptation allows fertilized eggs to remain undeveloped for many months. When food is plentiful, usually when days are warm and long, the eggs develop and the young are born.”

    What a great adaptation!

  5. #5 Susie
    January 17, 2008


    That’s some damn cute neuroscience, I’ll say.

  6. #6 Luna_the_cat
    January 17, 2008

    European badgers can still be nasty fighters, if you piss them off. But they are in general far more social animals (they live in large family “clans”, too), and social animals play.

    I have a special fondness for badgers. I think of myself as being essentially feline, but my husband…ah, he is definitely badger-like.

    Man, those little ones are cute.

  7. #7 Shelley Batts
    January 17, 2008

    I love badgers too! Ever since I saw Weebl’s “badger badger badger badger mushroom mushroom” animations (google it if you don’t know what I’m talking about.)

    That baby badger is pretty tolerant of the otter tromping all over his head. I can almost hear him saying “personal space!!!”

  8. #8 Luna_the_cat
    January 17, 2008

    Yeah, and the little squeaks when he’s(?) nearly getting bowled over….

  9. #9 Ian
    January 19, 2008

    Badgers? Badgers!

    We don’ need no stinkin badgers!

    (thank you Weird Al via John Huston…)

  10. #10 cfrost
    January 27, 2008

    “We don’ need no stinkin’ badgers!”

    Need ’em or not, we got ’em.

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