If you follow me on Facebook then you may remember that a while ago my daughter and I thought we may have found a badger sett while we were out exploring. Now since forever I have investigated every interesting looking hole in the ground that I have ever seen, and in my mind every one which was bigger than my head must of course be an entrance to a magical underground world that is a badger sett. This one felt different to the others though, it wasn't just the hole (well the collection of holes), there were other tell tale signs about as well. This time it felt like more than just a fantasy of my imagination, this time I was pretty sure we were actually onto something.
Last night a few of us finally had chance to go and stake out the sett at dusk. We sat quietly a few hundred metres downwind for what seemed like a really long time, but nobody appeared. Eventually it was getting really quite late, so we decided to call it a night, and have a lovely long walk home in the dark. We walked up past where I thought the sett was, just to check we'd actually been looking in the right direction.
As I walked to the edge of the gully I looked down and realised I was stood directly above where one of the entrances was. To my surprise, within seconds a big strong looking badger walked right out from beneath my feet. It may possibly have been the most excited I have ever been in my life!
Unfortunately, when I waved to the people coming up behind, to make sure they came slowly and quietly, the zip on my rucksack jingled and the badger ran back in. We sat a distance away for some time after that, and we heard them snorting and snuffling away under the bushes, although we didn't manage to catch another glimpse, and didn't dare try to get closer for fear of scaring them.
I'm over the moon happy to know that we have badgers living so close to our home. I can assure you there will be more tales about my experiences with them in the future, and I shan't be taking that rucksack out with me again. Now I just have to work out how to keep my children still and silent in a field for several hours so they can see them too (suggestions very much welcome).