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Badgers and protection

7th February 2017

There are man-eating lions in Africa, bear attacks in America and deadly snakes in Australia. Let’s face it, wildlife in the UK is relatively benign in terms of the danger it presents to humans. However, there are situations where these supposedly benevolent creatures can be troublesome. For example, when a badger burrows into a rail embankment it inadvertently puts many lives at risk because subsistence of the embankment could result in the derailment of a train.

UK legislation protects badgers and their setts. However, it is possible to apply for a licence which will permit the lawful destruction of a problematic badger sett. We are able to provide expert consultation to clients on the licensing process. Once a licence application has been successful, our sister company, Thomson Habitats has a skilled and experienced team who can deliver the on-ground works.

Depending on the licence conditions, an artificial sett may need to be created. Following this, the exclusion of badgers from the existing sett is achieved through the installation of one-way gates. These gates allow the badgers to exit the sett, but not return. The new sett will be built nearby so that it is colonised by the badgers when they are excluded from the existing sett. Once all the badgers have moved to their new home, the vacated sett may be destroyed.

Badger setts cannot be disturbed between December and June as this is when badgers breed. However, it is possible to survey the setts and apply for a licence during this period, in preparation for the works to be done during the non-breeding season.

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