Thursday, January 14, 2010
More badger dig visitors
As owls go, burrowing owls are relatively small, but they don't restrict themselves to small burrows, as you see here.
Back in November we set three camera traps at what looked to be convincing badger digs -- broad holes with big tailings containing big rocks and big dirt clods.
Ground squirrels don't dig burrows like that, but badgers do, whether for habitation or rooting out rodents.
Back in 1929 and 1930 camera trapper Tappan Gregory made camera trap sets at badger diggings in Montana.
In an article titled "In pursuit of badgers" he reported making sets using a trip wire without bait, and he got a badger at two out of four sets.
And here's the rub, he got both photos after only 2 nights!
On the Chimineas Ranch we have had cameras at badger burrows for over 100 camera trap nights, and no badger has shown its face.
It's disappointing, but we're not complaining.
Burrow tailings are an interesting stage for grassland drama.
As long as the burrowing owls visit and the pocket mice duke it out there, we can wait for badger.
Gregory, T. 1932. In pursuit of badgers. Journal of Mammalogy, 13(4):329-330