Our first little orphaned badger cub of the year arrived nearly two weeks ago. He was so tiny he could fit in the palm of your hand.
How he became to be orphaned is not exactly known. He was found by an off-leash dog, so we are not sure if the dog took the cub from the sett or the cub’s mother had died and the cub crawled to the entrance of the sett and that’s where he was found.
Sadly, no sett could be found to explore different options and to see if there were other cubs in need.
The cub was injured but not badly. He was taken to a veterinary clinic for treatment and was stabilized.
We were then contacted by a badger group to see if we would take on the mammoth task of hand rearing the two-to-three- week-old youngster.
As we have lots of experience and expertise in this field we gladly agreed to help.
A member of our wildlife response team went to collect the cub for me. He arrived at Kildare Animal Foundation snug and fast asleep.
When I picked him up, I could tell he was a strong little one and that, with the right care, he would do well.
So began the bottle feeds every two hours, even through the night.
After 10 days, I am now able to put him on feeds every four hours.
He is a good feeder now and in a routine — just like a human baby.
I don’t talk to him or treat him like a pet, as this would imprint him and mean he couldn’t be returned to the wild.
The yet unnamed cub will stay with us until September, and this will be a very expensive rehabilitation, both in terms of time and resources.
There were a lot of people and organisations involved in the safety of this little cub and we thank them for all they did. We will keep you updated on him via our Facebook page.
Be Wildlife Aware
If you find any dead/injured foxes or badgers this time of year, please check to see if it is a lactating female (if it’s safe to do so) — there may be new-born cubs in danger.
If you are worried, please note the exact location and call our Wildlife Helpline on 087 6201270 or your nearest rescue. We can all do our bit to help wildlife.